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Holiday travel (Christmas edition)

Started: 2009-12-23 10:56:25

Submitted: 2009-12-23 11:17:24

Visibility: World-readable

At the moment, Kiesa, Calvin, and I are in seats 18B, 18A, and 18C of Southwest flight something-or-another from Denver to Portland. We're scheduled to land just before noon best coast time (otherwise known as Pacific standard time). We're cruising at flight level 380 above mostly-cloudy skies over snow-covered landscape.

This marks the second phase of our unsplit-the-holidays plan, which had us stay home for Thanksgiving and double-up on Christmas. Thanksgiving seems to have worked out; it remains to be seen how Christmas works.

When we land in Portland, we're renting a car, rendezvousing with Kiesa's mother for lunch, and driving up the Columbia River to Walla Walla. We'll spend Christmas with my family (minus Willy, who's on the other side of the planet at the moment, somewhere between Katmandu (Nepal) and Bajendoba (India). We drive back down the Columbia River on Sunday for a slightly-delayed Christmas celebration with Kiesa's family. I fly to Lincoln on Wednesday for Megafest 8.2, then I fly back to Denver on Sunday, 3 January 2010, where my plan is to rendezvous with Kiesa and Calvin at the airport and drive home. (In the event that either one of us is delayed, I'll end up fending for myself (which presumably means finding an airport shuttle of some sort) and Kiesa will drive home, since she'll have to juggle Calvin too. I'm hoping we're not delayed, but at least I have a backup plan.)

It snowed three inches overnight, and the city, county, and state roads leading to I-25 didn't seem to have been plowed recently; it wasn't until we reached the Interstate that the road appeared mostly clear.

After a mostly-uneventful trek through check-in, security, and the train ride through Concourse C, I had a brief moment of panic when I realized that my watch had lost half an hour and that we were in fact only half an hour out from our plane boarding rather than an hour out. Since we flew Southwest, we needed to be at the gate at exactly the right moment to get priority boarding after the "A" group so we could get three seats together. This forced us to abandon our plan to get bagels for second breakfast; I grabbed coffee and a chocolate crossiant and tried to fill our water bottles when they called family boarding and I had to rush to the gate. We found an empty row towards the end of the plane and settled in for the flight to Portland. We still had to wait for deicing before taking off. Calvin seemed reasonably happy, despite being in desperate need of his morning nap. It remains to be seen how well he'll do for the rest of our journey, and whether he'll get us up early tomorrow morning.

I sometimes refer to you by your real names to real people.
- Neelix, 10 March 1999