Paranoia Can Be Rewarding
IT’S GOOD TO BE HOME AGAIN.
For the week between Christmas and New Year we were down in Texas – visiting family, watching the youngsters (read Great-Grandchildren on the Texas side of the family) enjoy Christmas, and not being able to stay awake to see the New Year come in. I couldn’t stay up that late at gunpoint – unless there was an S.F. Giants game being played on the west coast.
The best part of a trip like this is the time spent with the family. The worst part of such a trip has to be changing planes in Dallas. Dallas is the Black Hole of Travel Plans. It is the confluence of lost luggage, cancelled flights, and crowded planes. I feel sure that if the Wright Brothers had known what air travel would be like in Dallas, in our day, they would have just burned the blueprints for their airplane and gone back to fixing bicycles.
When we left Indiana it was a balmy Midwestern 55 degrees and within 24 hours of arriving in the Corpus Christi area it was a balmy South Texas 43 degrees with 35 mph winds that made it feel closer to freezing. WHAT’S GOING ON HERE? Willard Scott announces his retirement and everything goes kerflooey?
It was a good thing I packed my college alma mater official alumni sweatshirt. I was cozy in the old school colors.
I’ve written about the trip down already. The trip back north is its own dip into the wading pool of craziness.
I should have known that things were not going to be as they usually were when we went through the TSA Checkpoint Charlie in Corpus Christi. The TSA zombies were all smiling – very suspicious. The last time we went through their little duchy they treated me like I was Jeffrey Dahmer. This time – like I’m “The Source of All Joy and Happiness,” or Santa Claus. Personally, I think they were all stoned.
After another quick spin on the Monorail aka “Space Mountain,” we got to our gate with time to spare – no 100 yard dashes or last second gate changes. It was making me nervous. I was waiting for the proverbial “other shoe” to drop. What would it be? A sudden tornado just over our gate? Our flight crew walking off the job to protest the dearth of Adam Sandler movies on their longer flights? I just knew that something stupid was going to happen – after all, this was Dallas.
The only thing that I found to be – mildly questionable was something I saw while we were playing Crack the Whip on the Monorail. There was an ad on the tram announcing that there are now five, count ‘em, five, TGI Friday restaurants inside the Dallas airport. That’s a lot of deep fried green beans. Terre Haute has one – Terre Haute (That’s French for, “What is Wasabi?”)
When our plane lifted off for Indianapolis, with seats to spare, I finally relaxed, put in my Earplanes ear plugs so I wouldn’t be deaf as a post for the next two days, and nodded off.
There is no last minute “gotcha!” to this account. We landed, got our luggage in record time, picked up the car, grabbed a bite and drove home.