I next went to the front desk to get extra-late checkout and succeeded. Our checkout time was upped to 3pm, which was extra-good for Carla.
Next, I went back to the room to shower before anyone could smell me. I dressed, went back to the main area, and hung out. It was eventually time to check out, so I went back, only to find out the hotel had disabled the door key. I had to go to the front desk and get rekeyed.
I went to the room again. Pat was out; Carla was still there. She and I packed, and as we were leaving the phone light went on. It was a message at the desk for me from Warren. He had this idiotic idea that I should take the airport shuttle to a local hotel where he'd meet me. UGH. I had purposely flown out of SJC so we wouldn't have to do that routine. My bags were heavy, and I wasn't up to shlepping to an airport shuttle.
I checked out, making sure to have the data set up. I missed the closing ceremonies because this took a while.
Eventually I got to the main programming area where I sold five (!!!) Consonance memberships, bought a membership to next year's GAFilk, and got Pat's share of the room money. I then got asked to do "Poetry's Greatest Hits" yet again. I was nearly ready to catch my plane, but since this was a request, I did it. I think I'm going to hear that medley in my sleep the next few nights.
The shuttle ride was uneventful, but Atlanta's airport security sucked. They insisted on x-raying my laptop unit. I had inadvertently left my Leatherman in the computer bag, so I had to go back to United's counter to ask for it to be put in my luggage. The lady happily obliged (and did, btw; kudos to them!). The second trip through a computer screwdriver (the kind they give away at trade shows) stopped everything. I let them keep it. Ugh.
Atlanta doesn't allow Smart Cartes past the security screeners. This is annoying if your carry-on bags are heavy (like mine were). I saw jhitchin waiting for his flight as I went to mine. He apparently noticed my struggles with security (he could see the station from his seat) and was mildly amused.
Boarding the plane was simple enough. I had a window seat on the first leg with nobody in the middle. I took advantage of this to log in from mid-air (w00t!). As the battery was fading I looked for the spare, only to realize the effing airport security screener had forgotten to put it back into the bag. Grrr.... I knew it'd be at least a day or two before I'd have time to do anything about this.
The last leg of the flight was torture. I was sandwiched between two women, one of whom was really snarky. I had an extra blanket and was trying to give it to the flight attendant. The lady to my right offered to do so, but instead sat on it. Given how badly I had wanted a blanket on the flight out, I thought this was really rude.
The attendants on this flight sucked, too. I had pushed the signal for the attendant before takeoff, yet nobody noticed it till the flight had nearly landed. Both women seated next to me were amused. I suggested to them I'd likely have gotten better service if I had a penis; they laughed in agreement.
During this trip I had called Warren to get him to pick me up at the curb at baggage claim. I called again as the plane touched down to tell him to head to the airport. My timing was perfect. He called to say he was on Airport Drive as my guitar, the last luggage item, appeared. I moved my stuff to the curb and was jumping up and down to catch his attention...as he pulled over on the wrong side of the street, where I couldn't get to him. AIEEEE!!!!!
I signalled for him to go around again, and he called my cell phone to tell me he was going around again. He asked me where I'd be. I told him I would be where I was: Right in front of baggage claim, at the curb, jumping up and down to catch his attention. Finally he found me. He was in a bad mood for whatever reason, but I suggested we go to IHOP to get food, and that perked him up. (Warren is somewhat hypoglycemic but hasn't yet grokked this. His mood always improves with the input of food.)
Next stop was the store to get milk and sympathy cards. The Chief Engineer at the radio station had died Wednesday night, and his funeral was the next morning. Warren wasn't going (he didn't feel up to it), but I was, because I also knew his wife and had spent much time with her when she'd come with him to the station.
At last we were home. Lady was all eager to jump all over me, and I was eager to see her. We cuddled a bit, then I set my alarms for the funeral and went to bed.