Thursday, May 03, 2007

The Humiliation of 24 Hours in Houston

So we´re starting the forty minute flight from Dallas to Houston, and the pilot keeps talking about how we´re definitely going to make it right on time, but with a tone of voice that just telepathically screams, I´m lying. And of course we end up an hour late.

Which is just exactly the amount of time that we were supposed to have before the Quito flight took off. Which it did, right on time. At least, that´s what they told us.

And there are two giant conventions in town and a lot of weather related screwed up flight plans on top of that, and all the rentacar companies are sold out and none of the hotels have rooms, and anyway I don´t want to pay $150 a night for a crappy night in Houston. HOUSTON?????? I mean, Managua would be interesting. Cleveland would even be a hoot. But Houston has absolutely nothing about it except flat and humid and vapid. Not to mention starting to get hot this time of year.

Oh, and of course there aren´t any other flights out to Ecuador until same time tomorrow. Not to mention that we left the cell phone at home, because why would we possibly be needing it on this trip?

So two and a half hours later I finally tracked down the very last motel room in the greater Houston airport metro area. A cheapie at $93. And then we went down to find the luggage that the people upstairs said we had to claim because we missed the flight.

So at 9 pm the people downstairs tell us that it will take at least 4 hours to find said luggage. That is, unless it was put on the plane, since the plane hadn´t really taken off until 45 minutes later.

So out we went to our motel room and slept in our clothes. And the next morning, so as to pass some time, I figured that, instead of eating at the Waffle House next door, we could walk two miles in the hot sun along a row of Texas sized car dealers so as to have breakfast at the IHOP.

Which we did. And then we walked back. And then we went out to the airport and sat there for five hours.

Surpisingly, it´s less than five hours to go from Houston to South America. And, naturally, they had screwed up our vegie meal request...

Anyhow, the luggage had been successfully placed in the plane, the taxi driver didn´t try to rip us off taking us in from the airport at midnight, and our hotel room still had one room left.

So now it´s time to start the travelogue.

Except that I´m going to hold off for a while.

Because a lot of time you want to wait until you´ve acclimated to a place before you start passing judgment. And this time we´ll have 21 days (not 22, thanks to Continental) to do so.

So I´ll just stop with a synchronicity.

Because last night, as we were sitting in the back of the plane and I was yelling at the stewardess because I was hungry and they had no food for me, on the other side of the aisle was an Ecuadorian man and his family. And today when we were looking in the pastry window of a high end coffee shop semi admiring their pastries, the same man was entering the same pastry shop, and he stopped and we ended up having a nice conversation, etc., etc.

But that´s the thing about synchronicity. It defies all odds, and yet doesn´t have any intrinsic meaning.

Or does it???


At 6:01 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Great work.


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