Home > Travel > Entry 06/11/2008 09:22:22 PM – Mentat 415

Entry 06/11/2008 09:22:22 PM – Mentat 415

06/12/2008
     I haven’t had quite the difficult time trying to put together a journal entry in a long while.  From the 5 days trip to Seattle, to my turning 44 today, I’m just not sure what to start with…  I mean, I’ve uploaded all of my photos to my Flickr account (http://www.flickr.com/mbaldelli) and some of the choice photos to my DA account (http://mbaldelli.deviantart.com), and put information as to what and why I had taken some of the photos, but when it comes to sitting here and putting it all into order?  Man, it’s been a hell of a difficulty finding a good way to start.  And I think I know finally how I’m going to go with it.  So if it seems a little all over the place — there’s a method to my madness…
     It started on Thursday when I was standing there in Kennedy Plaza, waiting patiently for either the 14 or the 20 to show up, I got the pages from Orbitz first telling me that my flight was on time to a page in 10 seconds after that telling me it was 10 minutes behind — I knew right there and then it was going to run much later than that.  So, standing there in Kennedy Plaza I made the decision to pull out my windbreaker because I had a sneaking suspicion that with the hour lay-over in New Jersey being whittled down from an hour to less than that, I would find myself running from one end of the airport to the other, while leaving my baggage behind for it to catch the next flight to Seattle. 
     Getting to the airport, the 10 minute delay became almost an hour delay, which meant that I had about 5, maybe 10 minutes to get to my connecting flight, and glad that I got the windbreaker out.  Of course, the longer that I sat there, the more I was convinced that I wouldn’t be making my connecting flight.  That got confirmed quickly when the desk agent called up anyone with a connecting flight in Newark.  The agent tried to go through three different airlines, and realizing that they were all booked — gave me an alternative of re-trying the next day. 
     Taking my chances and knowing my limits, I told the agent that I would prefer to keep my itinerary as was, and asked what would happen with my luggage (as I had checked it).  I thought that he told me that the bag would be pulled out of cargo so that I could grab it and run with it, but it turned out that he thought that I hadn’t checked the bag, and would make arrangements for me to grab it quickly on the way out while I ran to the connecting flight.
     Turned out that the flight went well, but when the plane was about 60 miles from Newark, the plane was forced to circle the area for a while.  The pilot told us that it could be up to an hour, but ended up being about three circles before we got the go ahead to land.  Landing, the plane ended up having to sit on taxi-way for another 10 minutes before the plane could dock with the terminal. 
     Of course, the instant we landed, and were near enough to the terminal, I took the risk to turn on my cell to see whether the connecting flight suffered being late like my departure from Providence, but I didn’t get any pages which meant that it was on time.  Seeing the time, I realized that it had left without me, and checking with an agent in the terminal — the only flight out to Seattle from there wouldn’t be until about 8 the next morning. 
     I also checked with the agent to see whether a hotel would be comped, and it turned out that they wouldn’t because the issue out of the Midwest was an issue with weather and not a mechanical problem, so they weren’t comping.  Annoyed, I started making arrangements for a room for the night at Travelodge, and would have to go without my bag as the agent told me it would be quite a lot of work to get it and check it again.  
     Standing at the bus stand for almost two hours, the shuttle from Travelodge never showed up, so checking with a couple of others, ended up going to Econo Lodge. I was rather annoyed given that I’ve had better luck with Travelodge than Econo Lodge not to mention that it was cheaper — but given that Howard Johnson and Holiday Inn were sold out by the time I called them, I wanted a room more than sleeping in a terminal again.  (I did that when I went to my brother’s wedding a couple of years ago, and said I wouldn’t do that again as it was uncomfortable and annoying). 
     Of course, the "fun" of this part of the trip is that because I’m without my bags, I would end up wearing the same clothes for better than 2 days, which while it wasn’t too bad weather-wise, I still think that psychologically — I wouldn’t like the feeling…  But I’d be able to buck up and deal with it ’til I got into Seattle the next morning 11’ish.  Seemed that there was something going on in the Newark/Elizabethtown area as the motel had a lot of teens and twenty-somethings milling about in the courtyard and parking lots.  At least they were quiet, and I was able to get a fairly good night’s sleep there. 
     Resuming my trip the next day, I got into Seattle on time, and I was happy when I got down to baggage claim and saw my bag get off the plane.  Getting outside, and getting to the motel was a confusing mess that sorted itself out pretty easily once I got the lay of the bus area.  One of the buses that left the airport headed south, but as transit maps can sometimes be deceiving, I decided to check with the driver if he actually went by the motel. 
     That in itself was hysterical.  The driver had no clue where the Skyway Inn was and he had no idea on the numbering on the street in spite of the fact that he’d been running the route at least a month according to what he was telling me, but when I told him the approximate distance it was south on the road, he confirmed that he went by there.  Got there without too much trouble, and at the meager cost of $1.50 so I had nothing really to complain about.  A couple of days later I found out the reason why he didn’t know…  Taking the bus for route 174 from Downtown Seattle to the hotel, I noticed that the road changes names at least 3 times, with another name of it being listed on any street maps of the area.  This was enough for even me to get confused, and let it go after learning this. 
     So the Hotel Manager gave me a room right on the main drag and on the first floor and closing the door behind me, noticed immediately that the door had big old gaps in the door-jam, and double checking it, it was secure enough to make me happy, and taking a shower and changing clothes, headed back to downtown to check out life in Seattle. 

     Now let me get something straight before I continue…  I didn’t tell D that my trip had changed and that I got into Seattle the next morning, and hoping that he would check on me, get a page from him.  I didn’t.  So, I didn’t expect him to be at the airport when I arrived.  But I did expect him to make contact at sometime for the weekend.  I don’t know why, but I got the impression that he’d get in contact with me somehow. This instinct was pretty accurate, all I had to do is bide my time and see how he’d do it.  I had hoped that he would do it physically, but a phone call or page would work as well.
     So leaving the room, I headed downtown. 

     I’ll write more tomorrow.  Right now, I have to get to bed because I have to get up early tomorrow to shop.  More on the trip tomorrow.  Until then.

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Categories: Travel
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