May 2, 2012
Departure from Sacramento, CA airport was a whole new experience. A new building, new shuttle, new sculpture. I had to relearn my way around. I don’t know what the exciting rabbit sculpture is made of but it looks like papier mache’, and isn’t he grand?
I read in the NY Times if you ever want an upgrade to first class, you’d better be wearing a suit and tie. I like the freedom people have to dress comfortably while traveling. Travel brings hassle enough without having to be constricted in your clothing. Flip flops, people glued to their cells, cleanly shaved or not. Makes for great people watching.
And then the excitement. While going through security, a SHOUT. Security people answered loudly, halted the lines and in military precision took places and stood at attention. Silence. It was strange, the only sound was the loudspeaker, regularly announcing flights. .
Everyone waited, suspended. After several minutes, a few people began to ask what was going on. Is this a drill? Finally the security leader gave the loud ALL CLEAR. And the same answering shouts as personnel returned to their original positions. A security person came to our line and pushed through someone’s luggage and told the person about to approach the exray belt, “This luggage goes through first.” And then everything returned to normal. No explanations. We couldn’t tell what had just happened, except to suspect someone was removed from that line and taken away. We didn’t see the owner of the luggage return.
Of course, the real excitement was getting to see my sweetie again, waiting patiently at the airport in Albuquerque.
Jim was pleased to point out to me that Albuquerque’s airport is all solar. And I was pleased to learn that. I so wish more builders would do the same. Such a cost savings for we beleaguered taxpayers.
And then…and then…we were hung up in traffic just six cars away from the intersection. We waited through many green lights. Those vehicles in a position to do so, turned around and tried to find a way out. We could tell that a Highway Patrolman was stopping the traffic. No accident. Then a phalanx of motorcycle cops, a couple sirens, passed through. We guessed that some dignitary was being escorted through town,( though we didn’t see a limo), but all we commoners had to wait. When we turned onto the major thoroughfare, we saw bright ribbons on two light-post stanchions leaving us to wonder anew for what we had waited?
March 8, 2011
I got up this morning and opened the door of the motor home only to have the wind whip it out of hand and slam it against the side. Whew! Headed for the spa, and came home feeling like I was about to be blown over. We did the wash before we left Soledad Canyon and the washroom doors kept blowing open and slamming closed in the wind. Once on the road, in the distance we could see sand blowing everywhere.
It was loud and bumpy and we knew we were hearing noises we’d never heard before. A woman frantically waved at us, then a second person right behind that vehicle was trying to tell us something. Jim stopped and did a walk around and the back spare wheel attachment with the bike rack was blowing open and slamming closed. Jim fixed it and on we went.
The wind was fierce and the dirt in the air got worse along with it. As we approached Mojave, there was a detour; several overpasses were closed down. We still didn’t connect it to the wind, wicked as it was. The next thing you know, a horrendous sound gave us to know something unwelcome had happened. It was the awning.
It blew open. Against the pressure of the wind, Jim struggled to get both sides even, the lock un-engaged and the awning rolled back in place.He got some rope pieces and tied the support bars. It was up, and I continually watched it from the window and watched the wind passing through two inch gaps between he layers of the rolled awning. The raising strap kept beating a tattoo against he side, then the roof and back to the side.Then we saw our first 18 wheeler over on its side about 200 feet behind us.
In less than a quarter mile, we passed two more 18 wheelers over. We began to understand that this storm was nothing to fool around with. Jim slowed from 45 to 40 miles per hour.
People headed for off ramps or an overpass were blocked and parked on the side of the road. The CHP had closed several of them in the area hit hardest by the wind. Probably after this guy went over.
I could see that his airbag had deployed. He was on an overpass.
Jim slowed to 35 miles per hour.
As we approached Tehachapi, pass there were caution signs for campers and high trucks. At every pull out were motor homes, and campers, and trucks and cars stopped, waiting out the storm.
We debated about stopping, but at a low rate of speed, we crawled along.
People who felt they were unwieldy with trailers, motorcycles, and odd loads pulled out to wait. We couldn’t find a place to pull over, after debating, without obstructing the road, so we soldiered on.
Finally, down on the other side of Tehachapi, a huge storm cloud looked about to dump some rain, but didn’t.