austin_dern (austin_dern) wrote,
austin_dern
austin_dern

Be sure to wear some flowers in your hair

When I got to San Francisco International Airport and hugged my goodbyes to Roofus and Skyler, I had a spot of fun in learning my baggage was overweight. I did expect that; it was overweight to start with. While I'd tried using this trip to bring home stuff I didn't need, new books and clothes more than filled the gap. We had fun just fitting both our luggages into Skyler's car to drive to his office (where there's a reserved parking space for the person who had the best costume in last year's Halloween party, who doesn't use it because he bikes in to work most days) to kill time a few hours before going to the airport.

Anyway, my counter worker -- who'd tried to get me to use the self-checkin system, which didn't work because I was going overseas and had baggage going to Tokyo and on to Singapore, which I tried to explain before using the self-checkin system that didn't work -- told me I could either pay a ridiculous overweight charge, or I could try moving things around so that the bags weren't overweight. So I took a couple DVD boxes and a stack of hardcover books out of one suitcase, bringing it to acceptable margins, and tried stuffing them into one of my carry-on bags, which made the weight acceptable, a process that makes sense to any bankrupt airline. While I was repacking I startled one of the other counter workers, who saw the little plush coati doll I keep with me. She'd thought I had a real animal in my carry-on, and I gave my usual What Is A Coati speech, 20-second version, to several of the workers who were delighted at such an odd animal. It's fun being obscure and chic.

I've got to remember to go through San Francisco and Tokyo in future, since both these legs were on 777's, and they have the in-seat screens so you have your selection of movies or watching the flight progress map. The 747's going from Chicago or to Hong Kong just have the common theater screens, and if the movie's unappealing you're stuck with it nagging at your peripheral vision. Going to Tokyo I had the row to myself when the woman sitting next to me eagerly jumped up to get to another seat (the plane was half-empty) but I couldn't lift the armrest since this was the first seat of the section. However, it gave me more room to stretch my legs and I got up a whole three times during the ten-hour flight, which for me is hyperactive. It felt good, though, having room to stand.

Trivia: Nicholas Copernicus's birth name was Mikolaj Kopernik. Source: Measuring the Universe, Kitty Ferguson.

Currently Reading: The Persistence of Vision, John Varley. I think my mind works too much like his, or else I read the collection of short stories years ago and forgot that fact. I'm calling too many of the plot twists far in advance of when he wants them revealed.

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