Monday, November 21, 2011

Gulf Coast Saga: Day 1, Part 2 - Windowless Leaving Seattle

My travel profile includes window seat.  I look forward to flying over the landscape, gazing down at meandering rivers, tilted fault-block mountain ranges, Cascade volcanoes, open-pit mines, belching industry, small towns, small airports, just about everything.  I boarded the plane with this in mind.  Boarding a plane is a routine that involves shuffling down the aisle to my row, dumping my bag in the overhead, squirming my way to the window seat, buckling in loosely, relaxing a bit, then taking a look out the window.  What! Wait! Hey, no window.  Yep seat 10A on this 737-800 had no window.  I was honestly quite bummed.  I told the young woman in the center seat next to me that I was going to draw a window with a face looking in.  The upside to being windowless was that I read a book cover to cover between Seattle and Dallas-Forth Worth.  As we were on approach into DFW, I strained to look out the window in the next row up.  The young woman next to me who it turns out had a wicked sense of humor says to me "Looking out your imaginary window?"

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Gulf Coast Saga: Day 1, Part 1 - TSA Carnival Barker

I'm on my way to Mobile and Pensacola to visually review vacant residential units in several apartment complexes for damaged asbestos-containing materials and mold.  The work is a little south of my pay grade but we're lacking in available qualified staff and I'm happy to win a trip to the Gulf Coast.

I'm flying from Seattle to Pensacola, with a stop in Dallas-Fort Worth.  The real trip starts with running the TSA gauntlet.  This morning we're greeted by a carnival barker TSA agent with his pitch about removing all liquids and gels from your bags.  Geez, he's annoying.  I never remove my liquids and gels from my bag, at least I don't in Seattle.  But I'm tempted to this time.  He's loud but not that compelling.  Like the majority of TSA agents, he's packing some extra pounds and he's having a bad hair day, everyday.  I didn't take out my liquids and gels one time in Salt Lake City and they looked in my bag and found them.  The TSA agent scolded me.  It was rough.  Well, they didn't find my liquids and gels this time.  So there Mr. Loud Mouth TSA agent.