~~ "She has so many aliases, you'd think she was a spy!" ~~

Friday, August 24, 2007

Howl of joy!

Squee! We’re going on a wolf tour tomorrow!

I’ve read about it in Laurell K. Hamilton’s blog ages ago, and totally didn’t process that it was here. Doi. Ken found the info, and now I’m bouncing around the room and squeeing. Only very quietly, because he’s on the phone making the reservation.

Thursday, August 23, 2007

Where are we going?...

…How do I get there?/What should I bring along?*

Welcome to LAX, where there are not enough outlets near actual seats—and my back really can’t take sitting on the floor. It’s probably wrong and bad for me to resent people sitting near those outlets and not using them, huh?

I’m off on another adventure! I thought I’d rambled about this before, but folks have asked, so probably that rambling was all in my head. So here’s the scoop.

We’re going on our annual bike trip to Curve Cowboy Reunion (CCR), which this year is being held at the Tan-Tar-A Resort in Missouri. CCR has little in common with Harley rallies like Sturgis. For example, we have whiskey tastings. Oh, and financial seminars… Anyway, it’s held in a different place every year—we’ve been to Tennessee, Colorado, and Wyoming, but we missed Atlanta last year due to Ken’s work. There are usually about 500 riders/passengers and 300 bikes, mostly BMW K12s and other BMW bikes. (Ken’s riding a GT now.)

As you know (Bob), Ken’s been doing a lot of distance riding/rallies, with his ultimate goal being the Iron Butt Rally, held every other year. This year, the starting, midpoint, and end point is St. Louis, and Ken’s helping out one of the riders by changing his tires, doing a tune-up, etc., at the midpoint.

Ken left for Missouri Sunday night/Monday morning (to miss the worst heat of the desert), and is closing in on the state as I type. For a variety of reasons, including my trip to Virginia happening right before this one, I’m flying out and meeting Ken there. (Plus there’s that “avoid riding through the desert in August” factor.) Tomorrow I’ll hang out in the hotel room and work while Ken kicks tires with the riders. On Saturday, we’re heading to visit our friends Hope" and Bob, who moved to Missouri from southern California last year. We’ll stay with them through Sunday.

Monday we head to Tan-Tar-A (which in my head becomes “ta-ran-ta-ra, ta-ran-ta-ra,” thank you Gilbert & Sullivan), where we’ll be sharing a cottage/townhouse/something-or-other with another couple. From then ‘til Friday, we’ll be riding through the Ozarks, exploring caverns, visiting a Victorian castle ruin, hanging out with friends, taking an advanced riders course (Ken) and a self-defense class (both of us)…. And I’ll be working as much as I can.

Friday we’ll go back to St. Louis for the IBR finish and banquet. On Saturday, we’ll head to Arkansas to visit Ken’s 93-year-old grandmother and aunt. At some point after that, we’re going to Texas to visit Ken’s brother, and then I fly home Wednesday.

So, that’s the scoop. You have been illuminated.


Scored an outlet—twelve minutes ‘til boarding. I’ll take what I can get. :-)


The Denver airport notes that the ladies’ rooms are also tornado shelters. I don’t know whether to be disturbed or relieved.

That said, this is the first airport I’ve been in that has visible, clear clocks.


Ken says that while he was riding, he had the iPod on random album shuffle. As he pulled up in front of the hotel, a new album started, with a crowd cheering.

And then Tommy Shaw shouted, “Hello, St. Louis!”

I cannot stop giggling about this…


Currently Reading: Shadow Game, Christine Feehan
Lately Listened To: airport announcements
Recently Watched: Painkiller Jane, Graham Norton

*Bonus points to anyone who can ID this song!

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Maybe the plane is invisible?

I’m on the plane to Los Angeles. I don’t know if I can adequately express how happy that makes me. Even if something messes up the flight to Oxnard, I’m still close enough to get home.

It was a little touch-and-go there, though.

We got to the airport at 5 a.m. today, and the check-in line was unhappily long, plus there was only one person working. I tried to use the express check-in kiosk, but it couldn’t find me, probably because it’s a rescheduled flight. So, finally finally finally I get up there (they’d added a second person by then, and also were asking folks on the 6 a.m. flight to come up first), and I get my boarding passes, and I turn in my suitcase, and I hug Sarah goodbye…

…and I get upstairs to discover the line for security is out the hallway to the gates, and edging down the hallway to other gates. This is not a large airport. I gaped. But I figured I was checked in, I had a little time, etc. Then, while standing in that interminable line, I looked at my boarding passes to discover that all I actually had was a boarding pass for the Chicago to LA flight, and the other two things were some other sort of flight document.

That other thingie got me through security, at least, but as I was waiting for my stuff to come through the screening machine, I heard them call final boarding for my flight. I grabbed my stuff, including my shoes, and ran. And ran. And thanked the gods for my personal trainer and my chiropractor and my massage therapist, even though I thought I was going to pass out. A few months ago, there was no way I could have even tried. As I ran, they made the “…and everybody should now be on board” announcement, and I ran and ran, and they accepted my flight document and gave me a boarding pass and told me to go out that door there and down the stairs to the “silver plane.”

So now I have barrelled out onto the tarmac, in the heat and dark, in my socks, and I cannot find the plane.

There’s a United plane in front of me, but the door’s closed and the stair ramp moved away. There’s a larger ramp to my right with no plane attached. There’s a Delta plane farther to my left. I’m having trouble processing this (as I gasp and wheeze and stare). Would they have given me the boarding pass and sent me out the door if the plane’s door was closed? Would they send me out this door if the plane was somewhere else? I was about to turn around and go back in and cry at the nearest United agent, when a baggage woman across the way shouted at me. I assumed she was telling me to get the hell off the runway, but I said “What?” and she said something along the lines of “It’s that other plane,” pointing at another United plane way behind the one in front of me.

So I ran across the tarmac in my socks and fell up the stairs, and, barely able to breathe because all the moisture has been sucked from my mouth, I gasp an inquiry as to whether this is the plane to Chicago, and it is, and I collapse in my seat and wait for my heart to stop pounding. As it turned out, I wasn’t even the last person to board.

Some time after that, it occurred to me that this was so going in a story someday.

I then had 10 minutes to switch terminals in Chicago, but a lot of people were in the same boat as me. I’m in an exit row, which just feels like the world’s biggest perk to this otherwise insane experience.

Okay, and now I’ve eaten for the first time in six hours. Life is definitely looking up. And I have a massage tonight, which will go a long way towards restoring my sanity.

Ken will be picking me up from the airport! Poor guy rushed home to be able to do that on Sunday. He’s leaving tonight, though, to start heading to Missouri. He was going to do a timed coast-to-coast ride, but decided he’d rather be more prepared. Plus he misses me. So he’ll wait ‘til after dark, when it’s cooler and the traffic has died down, to get through LA and the desert. I turn around and fly back out on Thursday morning. Ack.

The person who was happiest about this whole delay thing was Fiona, Sarah’s daughter. She was just over the moon that she got to spend more time with me. Sarah and I were happy about spending more time with each other, sure, but we also sat around Sunday evening and most of Monday feeling confused, like we were waiting for something, but we weren’t sure what…


Sarah’s and my book signing for A Little Night Music went smashingly. We sold over half the stock ordered by the store, and were the third best-selling book for the store that week! Go us!

I’ve been working away at my urban fantasy novel, which I really have to ramp up progress on if I’m going to get it done by the end of September. I’ve also started an anthology story that I’ll finish off in the next day or two.


Well, I almost missed my Oxnard flight because I went to the bathroom and they boarded the plane in the two and a half minutes I was gone. But I hopped on, and then we were in Oxnard, and Ken was waiting with kisses and Baja Fresh.

I’m exhausted, but I’ve gotten a lot done: unpacked, caught up (mostly) on e-mail, sorted mail, paid bills, done some prep work for our trip. Ken leaves in a few hours. Wah.

Oh, and my massage therapist thought I was going to be away this week, but we’ve rescheduled for tomorrow evening. Phew!


Currently Reading: Summer Knight, Jim Butcher
Lately Listened To: Bloodletting, Concrete Blonde
Recently Watched: Gowan concert and videos (Still, so shocking.)

Sunday, August 19, 2007

Where I'm not

100 for 100
35 / 100 (35.00%)
In the "I could laugh or I could cry" category of life, I'm choosing to laugh about the fact that I should be on the first leg of my flight home right now, but all flights have been cancelled due to the weather, and the first flight they could book me on was Tuesday morning. At least I get in before 1 p.m. local time, so I'll have a day and a half before I leave for Missouri. But I'm pretty sure Ken, who's on his way home right now, will have to leave for Missouri before I actually get home. That's really the truly sucky thing about this. I can cancel my appointments, the cat sitters can continue for a few more days. I just really fucking miss Ken right now.

Oh, and have I mentioned recently how much I love Styx? I love the fact that I can be in the fourth row on the wrong side and at least four band members will spot me and smile at me in a "Hi, you're here!" way, and that Tommy will run out onto Def Leppard's catwalk to hurl a (new! exciting! think green!) tote bag at me. Yup. I love this band.