Sunday, September 07, 2008

Trains, Planes and Automobiles

I mention all three types of transportation because in my quick jog from Charlotte to Illinois all three types of transportation were used in some form or another.

To begin with, I traveled on a plane:

  • The flight was short; my time in the airport and then my time on the plane waiting for the airplane to take off were longer than the flight itself!
  • Due to the weather in Chicago, we had to wait in the plane for take out. I tried to sleep, however, my mind wouldn't cooperate. The overall flight was mostly smooth until it came time to land. At that point I held onto the arm rests (yes both of them) and prayed that we would not crash, and that I would not get sick- my prayers were answered.
  • On every flight, the flight attendants always begin by pointing out the exits- run to the closest one in case of emergency, the oxygen masks will drop if there becomes an issue, and that the seat cushions will help you float should we land in water. (Not quite sure how a water landing would even be possible, but we were prepared- just in case.) This time, however, the flight attendant added another comment upon our descent into Chicago. "Ladies and Gentlemen, the captain has requested that the flight attendants remain in their seats for the remainder of the descent. Please make sure your seats are upright and your tray tables are in the correct position. And, in case of an emergency evacuation, please.... leaveyourcarryonitemsontheplane. Thank you." Comforting, right?

Next up the Automobile:

  • My friend, Cindy, otherwise known as The Bride, picked me up right on time from the airport. We had the usual phone conversation prior to the pickup; "Where are you? What are you wearing? Are you in the right lane? Get ready to throw your body into the car while I drive quickly by so that the airport people don't yell at me." (Okay, I made the last one up.) But, she came, I jumped in, and off we went.
  • Most of the ride contained mindless chatter, me talking nonstop about- I actually am not sure what about- and Cindy nodding and listening like the great friend she is. Half way through the trip home we switched spots and she began telling me her great stories and I begin listening. It was, despite the late hour and the plane delays, it was a nice way to catch up.
  • The next day included more time in the automobile-mine this time. I was responsible for picking up The Bride and delivering her on time so that she could get ready. Word to the wise: Don't be late when picking up a bride- you will stress yourself out. (Now, in this case, The Bride was wonderful and not in a hurry, I however was driving like a maniac, while she sat calmly to the side telling me how much time we had to get to the reception and how she wasn't worried so I shouldn't be either.)
  • On Sunday my trip back TO the airport included my mother gripping the steering wheel, acting afraid of the Chicago traffic- although at this point she has been to the airport more times than I have.
  • The final part of my trip involved a taxi ride in Charlotte from the airport to my apartment. We'll call my cab driver "Ray" for short. Ray was certainly effecient at driving. He also had miscellaneous items all over his cab. For example, Ray's sunglasses were green and yellow plastic. They looked similar to a child's sunglasses, ones that you might find in a previous decade and in the dollar store. Ray's driving technique was very interesting. Each stop that was made, was made very quickly. The result at each stop was both the driver and myself flying forward, held in the seat only by the seat belt, similar to what you might experience on a rollar coaster. This occurred once again at each stoplight. I don't believe I suffered any whiplash but I should know more after I sleep.
Oh the train:

  • Saturday morning my mom called me to give me her ETA. Since was taking the train up to me, and then she was taking me to the airport on Sunday and using my car while I'm out of town.
  • I was a little groggy, but the conversation was pretty straight forward.
    • Me: When will you get here?
    • Mom: 1 pm.
    • Me: I will come to get you then.
    • Mom: Sounds good.
  • That is why it was a little surprising when 1 pm arrived, and the train, and my mom were no where to be found. This caused a new conversation to ensue.
    • Me: Where are you?
    • Mom: On the train.
    • Me: I thought you were gonna be here at 1.
    • Mom: I should be. We're just getting into Chicago now.
    • Me: You are still on the South Shore Train?
    • Mom: Yes.
    • Me: Um, it is 1.
    • Mom: Oops...I guess I won't make it by 1 then.
  • The previous conversation resulted in the both of us laughing at her 1 pm arrival. The real arrival time: 4 pm.
Some other tidbits from my weekend:

  • The reception was fun. Cindy, The Bride, looked beautiful.
  • I made a new friend. A 2 or 3 year old boy decided I was his designated dance partner for the night. "Dance. Dance with me. Go over there. Dance." So we danced.
  • I broke my camera. A fateful photographic incident occurred as my camera was passed from one nameless person to me. I had at that point taken a few pictures, and those pictures remained saved.
  • I bought a new camera- not a super camera, but one that should cover the remainder of my Adventures in Charlotte. I had to, of course, test my new camera. I included some, but not all of the test pictures below. I wanted to post more, but considering most of them involved my mom, and Christmas and my birthday are approaching, I thought that I would not post the majority of them, but I had to slip a few of them out here.

My new Dance Partner:

Kyle and Meg:
George was admiring himself in the mirror:
My mom's tight grip on the steering wheel:

Testing the new camera:
My mom's nose-

Oh the agony-My mom's ear-

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