New Shoes in the Rain

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Returning to my part of civilization

Since I travel quite frequently for my work, trips are pretty much old hat for me. But I'm on the way home from one of the more interesting trips I've taken in a while.

Before I elaborate, note that I'm writing this entry while using a free sample signin for Delta's onboard GoGo Wi-Fi service. Cool, yes?

Anyway, the primary thing that made this trip different is that my wife was already at our destination for a week before me. This was due to the arrival of our handsome new grandson, and my wife had been helping care for the little guy and his mom AND his big sister for the week before I joined the fun last Sunday.

As anyone who travels will attest, the time zone difference always presents some challenges. Making it worse is my stubborn habit of NOT changing my watch when visiting far-off lands such as Colorado or Arizona. This is largely because I need to stay abreast of what time it is when I call home, and because my sleep pattern and my stomach don't recognize the time change, I suppose I feel it's appropriate for my watch not to, either.

So I mentioned, I attended the Monday Night Football game last Monday evening between the host Denver Broncos and the visiting Pittsburgh Steelers. It was a pretty good game for about two-and-a-half quarters, but the home team faltered down the stretch and Pittsburgh was there to seize momentum and win the game. My son-in-law is a Steelers fan but opted to wear Broncos gear; I did my best not to chide him for not revealing his true passions (when I am a visiting fan for ANYTHING I ALWAYS wear my team's colors!), but it's my belief he did so for safety's sake. We were sandwiched into an upper deck section in a corner of the stadium among many Steeler fans, but had a great view of the field. The evening was lots of fun, but was spoiled a little by a ruckus in the men's room after the game. I'm still not clear what happened, but a Steeler fan of advancing years was being held back from a much younger Bronco partisan, who was also being restrained. No idea what caused it, but that certainly got the old adrenaline pumping.

The rest of the week was mixed; Tuesday and Wednesday I conducted some business in the field, blended with E-mails, phone calls and the like. Thursday was less so, and then Friday I had a heavy schedule of calls followed by a wonderful meeting with a woman with whom I had done some business some years ago. She lives in the eastern half of Colorado and we were able to find the time and place to meet for a catch-up lunch.

But the highlight of the trip, undoubtedly, was to spend time with our grandchildren, both our four-and-a-half year old granddaughter ("um, Poppy....?") and our spanking new grandson. The little guy appears to be still trying to figure it all out, I can tell, but slowly he and mom are moving into something approaching a routine. Hopefully for my daughter that routine will soon involve sustained sleep.

We're on the flight back; since my wife is flying on a ticket purchased with frequent flier miles and I bought mine the old-fashioned way, I'm sitting in first class (thanks to my over 120,000 accumulated miles this year) and she's in the coach section. What burns me up, though, is that there are four empty first class seats in front of me, one next to me, and several behind me, but the flight crew declined to bring my wife up to sit with me. Delta, if you're reading this, I'd like to talk with you.

And one more blurb to beloved Kentucky Wildcats achieved yet another milestone on the football field my knowledge, this is the first Kentucky squad to achieve bowl eligibility in four consecutive years EVER. Congrats to all of the players, coaches, trainers, support staff and especially the fans!


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