It always starts out with stress.
Even when we’re not leaving until 1130AM so the shuttle doesn’t have to pick us up until 9:30Am, but it might get here by 920AM. I should have stayed off-line and just chilled out, but that’s not my style, so I had barely logged off when the door bell buzzed very loudly. I freaked out and forgot the cell phone that I been charging specifically so the people we were hooking up with on the trip would be able to get in touch with me. I realized this five minutes after the shuttle pulled away from the door, by which time there was NO WAY, I could ask the guy to go back.
My biggest worry was that 5 days on the charger would kill it.
There was also an airport panic attack. You may remember that the only reason I did this trip was the “free” Business Class ticket I won at the office holiday party a few months back. Due to the uber-suckiness of American Airlines I was only getting Business on the way out, but at the airport, I had a sudden feeling that even though I’d called in the payment for the ticketing fee and gone nuts for weeks trying to get my IATA card revalidated etc, that I was going to go to the counter and they wouldn’t have ANYTHING, or that I couldn’t have the Business Class for some strange reason.
That didn’t happen. They gave me my Business Class boarding pass and everything should have been hunky dory, except then I ran afoul of the
I hate these people. I hate whoever tried to do the attack at Heathrow so that my desperately-needed hair conditioner is now suspect. I want whatever time it was in the impossibly distant past when there was a modicum of class or even basic human dignity associated with air travel.
On the other hand---Blessed Business Class, where my flight attendant looked EXACTLY like Janice Soprano down to the clunky jewelry. (I once had delusional 70’s dreams of being a flight attendant, but even then I knew my not gazelle-like frame would be an issue. Apparently it wouldn’t now.)
Unbelievable amounts of pitch and legroom. Food for free when the cattle car is being charged for what you know has got to be an unbelievably nasty sandwich. An offer of OJ, Champagne or water before we took off. Dinner was an anti-pasto plate with really good prosciutto and cheese. Warm nuts. Real, soft cuddly blankets and pillows on every seat so you don’t have to fight your fellow passengers to the death for even the hope of comfort. It was so wonderful, although I was already imagining how bad it would be going home the other way. The flight attendants were actually smiling at us and not treating every request like a major imposition. I was rapidly becoming those of my clients who have fits when they are not either upgraded or booked in Business.
I was working on U and V as well as other fanfics on the plane. Throughout trip, imagine me with notebook during any and all possible breaks in the action. I had dearly hoped to stockpile mmom fics before I left and it didn’t happen, so nearly every day I had the deadline looming.
Upon arrival at JFK, there was inexplicable and unexplained smoke in the hallways. Security people warning us to hurry. I was reminded of the season finale CSI-NY we had watched the night before which I will not describe further in deference to my UK-ers.
Despite my best efforts, I had failed dismally to “pack light” or at least light enough, and I hadn’t checked my duffle because hubby didn’t want to wait for baggage, so I was schlepping the thing and not moving at a quick pace.
I had booked a transfer, thinking to save money on a cab ride from Kennedy into the city. Again I turned into a problem child client when the ride wasn’t there despite continuing phone calls and promises of “He’ll be right there.”
Once someone did show up, and I’m sure he had to come all the way in from the city and had NOT be properly dispatched, the driver spend the entire ride alternately talking on his cell phone, without an earpiece thingie and texting. I mean he was staring at the damn thing instead of paying the least bit of attention to the road. Yikes.
We did arrive at our hotel in one piece. Fitzpatrick's Grand Central on East 44th St. Older property. Samllish room, but very nice and very FREE, except of course for taxes.
It had been raining when we got in and it was still sort of drizzly, but warm, New York drizzly so we walked around to give me time to decompress while we looked for food. It was Saturday night so stuff was still open.
As always being back in NYC made me realize how much I am not a New Yorker or even and East Coaster anymore. I was born at Mount Sinai hospital and lived in Washington Heights till I was 7 and did spend time in the city as a teenager and later, but I was completely disoriented. Hubby isn’t a New Yorker anymore either, but he had better bearings on where we were than I did.
When I get stressed, my body refuses to tell me I’m hungry, which is bad because I’m reacting to my low blood sugar even when my stomach isn’t sending hunger signals. Hubby has learned the hard way, that “I’m not hungry” doesn’t mean that I don’t need to eat.
We looked at and rejected many restaurants, until we found a nice seafood place called Docks (reminded me a bit of McCormick and Kuletos at Ghirardelli Square.) Hubby wanted soup and they had Manhattan Clam chowder on the menu. I had mushroom barley soup and one of those…oh; I really needed to eat… epiphanies. We also had some Pine Island Oysters. I’ve learned the hard way to eat the oysters on the coast I’m on. There was a very soothing rice pudding for dessert.
The only downside was a fairly noisy table next to us, dominated by a token Republican arguing in favor of the war and against the unions, especially the teacher’s unions. I think there’s a rule that an argument in New York has to involve the all-powerful teacher’s union.
We went back to the hotel so I could once again channel my most obnoxious clients as I desperately tried to get my internet connection hooked up. It took nearly two hours to get it really working and cost more money for 24 hours than I wish to mention, but there was no way I could be disconnected especially in the middle of mmom
I was able to chat with rivers_bend and Beta Goddess Carol and get the S posted. Now that it’s over, I’ll admit to cheating. Since I didn’t reset my computer, it was already past midnight where I was, but my posting time was the previous day. (I suck!)
Hubby watched SNL with Zach Braff, which was cute in places, and had a higher ratio of OK to CRINGE! than the Hugh Laurie which was the last previous time I’d watched.
I think I crashed at around 2:00AM, by which time hubby was long gone sleepy bye.
Coming next: BROOKLYN!