Today I flew the same plane three times.
I did get off the plane twice during the trip. I should clarify that I got off the plane when it was on the ground. Not while it was flying.
Actually one of the flight attendants said something about that.
"Smoking is not allowed on this plane. You may not smoke in the potty. If you do, we will throw you out. If you want, you may smoke outside. And if you can stand the 500 mph wind on the wing, you're welcome to enjoy our feature presentation - 'Gone With The Wind' "
By the time I realized I wanted to record what he was saying, it was too late. So I can just say that we had to turn off our "Blackberries, Crackberries, Strawberries..." and that if the "plane suddenly becomes a boat, you should reach under your seat cushion and grab the life vest".
So on and so forth.
But I digress.
I got off the plane at the first stop. Walked out into the terminal. Looked at the screen. Flight to Vegas... Gate A2.
Sign above on the wall - A1 to the left. A3-15 to the right.
Where the heck is A2? Is it like the 13th floor? Or the mysterious gate in Frankfurt for boarding on an El Al flight?
I peered down the terminal each way.
Then I had that "Aha!" moment. I turned around.
I guess I was getting back on the plane.
At the next landing, armed with the knowledge that I'd be staying on the plane, I hobbled off, got some Quiznos, and hobbled back on. This time I didn't have to wait to board, so that was nice. By this time my seat felt like home, so I settled in quickly.
I had some ideas to get some work done, but none doing. I slept almost the whole way, waking up just in time for the cloud cover to break and stun me with views of the canyons around Lake Mead.
Finally, in Vegas, after the typically bumpy approach to the ground, I got off for real, saying goodbye to "my" plane. Three flights on the same plane, three "cycles" in airplane talk, I figure that's enough to claim the plane as mine.
My friend Kevin met me at the airport and kindly got my luggage. We picked up our badges and headed over to the Outdoor Demo.
We got there late so we didn't get to do much, forget about riding, but it was a nice break from sitting on a plane. I felt a bit out of it, my leg was starting to really bother me, so I wasn't myself.
I declined to take pictures of the Liquigas girls, but I snapped a pic or two of other somewhat esoteric things. I figure the next few days will make up for it.
Oh, I should mention. 90 degrees, dry, sunny.
Kevin drove pretty much all night and hadn't gotten any sleep. His normal modus operandi when I first met him 17 years ago (he was one of my two housemates), because he apparently did this all the time.
He did manage to hook me up with a sweet Cervelo to ride around while I'm out here. I hope that we get to ride, but based on how exhausted I am already, I have my doubts.
I think I'm going to miss the TweetUp.
Hm. Let me stop typing and work on traveling a bit.