July 10th, 2013

krazy koati

All the children are scattered

First thing you should know about Detroit's airport is that all the roads around it are under construction, because some madman has taken over the Michigan Department of Transportation and has every road in existence, including the service alleys behind strip malls, under construction at once. One result is that all the signs to, for example, Long Term Parking, are wrong in that they'll steer you into parked bulldozers. There's an array of detour signs, about half of which bother to list all the things they're detouring to. Getting to the Green Lot and our long-term parking choice took only one nearly complete orbit of the airport's grounds, which stretch out from Windsor, Ontario, on past Ypsilanti and down into Toledo; but, bunny_hugger was fast on the draw and pulled us into the lot on our first orbit. Many other souls had to go two or three times around before finding their way in.

There's a shuttle-bus that takes people from deep inside long-term parking to their terminal, and one fetched us after a few minutes of wait. They also fetched a party of approximately 85 people, each with over two hundred bags each, after us, and who were being let off before us. To not exaggerate: it was four people, with three or four suitcases each, who were enthusiastic about their trip to Alaska on what seems to have been a vacation or maybe reuniting with family or seeing where one of them used to work or something. bunny_hugger and I scrunched up in the back of the van and waited for this to pass, and for the driver to make arrangements for a sherpa to bring their expedition's cargo to the base station.

As they unloaded bags, they grabbed my suitcase by accident, and I protested, ``That's not yours, that's mine,'' in increasingly ignored tones until bunny_hugger joined in and I stood partway up, which was their cue to recognize that this didn't quite look like one of theirs.

Following this part of another group got on, to go from one terminal to the other, and set off a dispute with the rest of the group about who was waiting there first. bunny_hugger and I were growing worried that we'd have enough time to safely get through security ahead of our flight, although at this point the events piling up on one another inspired in me that desire to sit back, relax, and see just how absurd everything was going to get. (I credit this curious sense of release from the present for inspiring events that turn stuff like airport shuttle bus rides into anecdotes.) But the angered remnants of the first group decided they couldn't all fit in the shuttle at once anyway, and we were let to go the rest of the way ourselves.

We dropped the bag off, went through security, and made it to our gate just in time to learn takeoff was delayed.

Trivia: The Outer Space Treaty (properly, the Treaty on Principles Governing the Activities of States in the Exploration and use of Outer Space) was signed simultaneously in Washington, London, and Moscow. Source: First Man: The Life Of Neil A Armstrong, James R Hansen.

Currently Reading: Poincaré's Prize: The Hundred-Year Quest To Solve One Of Math's Greatest Puzzles, George G Szpiro.