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Posts Tagged ‘st augustine’

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This is how I feel about 2017. I should be enthusiastically preparing new goals, tossing out old ones, and starting off on a good foot. I’m not.

I’m on the tail end of a nasty winter cold that kicked my butt and kept me out of the office a total of 13 hours last week. I’m coughing less and it hasn’t degraded into bronchitis, but I still lack energy and motivation. Today is the first day that I have done anything besides occupy space (I mean, aside from the daily living stuff we all do, like work, sleep, watch t.v., buy groceries and dog food, and watch it snow).

My brain is stuck somewhere on the long flight back from Georgia to Portland, just a week ago. We’d gone down to St. Augustine, Florida, on the Friday before: toured the old fort, wandered the “Colonial district”, drank beer at an Irish pub and a British pub, and spent the night in a motel. In the morning, we toured the lighthouse, and made the drive back to Georgia. My daughter-in-law took me to the airport in Savannah, and I began the long flight home. I didn’t sleep much.

The Irish pub was in the Colonial district and our beer maid was a gal from Beaverton, Oregon. They had great micro-brews on tap.

The British pub was a karaoke dive where the bartender occasionally neglected his duties to sing. We bought bottled beer because what was on tap was so… normal. And we laughed and laughed and laughed. Then we went to a pizza place and split a shot of Jamesons’ whiskey to the Irish in all of us.

I made a lot of flight observations.

On the way out of Portland to DFW, I waited in the gate near a woman who was glued to her cell phone. You could hear her entire conversation. She never looked around, just talked into that damn phone the hour we sat at the gate waiting. And she followed me when we started to queue up to board, still talking on the damn phone. Worse, she was my seat mate, but by then she’d put down the phone and pulled out a lap-top that she remained glued to for the entire flight.

Me, I like to people watch. I observe. I listen. Little kids wandering away from parents. People plugging into their electronics and texting or reading. The way people avoid eye contact. People who make eye contact and manage a small smile. Anyone looking shifty. The woman who walks away from her luggage and returns a few minutes later. The number of dogs in the airport. The stewardesses and the gate crew. The clothes people wear.

I am the person who will see it coming: the guy with the gun or whatever. These people glued to their electronics? They’ll never see it coming. Can’t say if I’d survive, but I think I have a better chance than the clueless.

I checked my luggage through to Savannah because the flight was full. Carry-on, checked voluntarily = free checked bag. Remember that. I try not to check my luggage, but it felt right on Christmas eve.

Coming home, I met the only bigot on the entire trip. He really didn’t have any place to complain (he was “group 3”) but he was upset because a Ukraine ex-pat edged her way in front of him in line and he had to move to a slot behind me. I was in “group 2” with the woman from the Ukraine. But he still had to rant loudly that she should “go back to Russia. Go back to the Ukraine. Go back wherever she came from”.

I want to say that everyone turned to him and told him to shut up. I want to say that someone else stood up to him. I wanted to shut him out and ignore him, but he was in line right behind me, and still ranting. So I shut him up. “Really? Are we going to do that now?” Meaning: it’s New Year’s Eve, and we all want to go home. Just shut up and be patient.” Oh, and “You’re an asshole.” It shut him up.

Then I was on the airplane, next to a sullen-looking woman of about my age, and an empty middle seat. She slept; I stared out the window. New Year’s Eve turned to New Year’s Day somewhere along the flight, and I saw fireworks. But it was still 2016 when I landed and still 2016 when my girlfriend dropped me off at home.

Then it was 2017 and I was sick. And it was cold. And we had a snow/ice storm. And I am just simply not ready for it to be 2017. The year is more than a week old, and I am just catching up to the fact that the date changed. Oy vey.

Can I go back to Georgia now?

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