Disorganized -- 12/08/00

This has been a very strange disorganized week... yeah, even more disorganized than usual.

Root canal on Tuesday. Woke up with a headache on Wednesday morning that didn't go away until noon. Thursday morning went to dentist for a cleaning. My general practice dentist, that is. (I have three: my G.P., my periodontist and my endodontist.) The office door was locked. I knocked and nobody answered. I looked at my Day Runner. It was a Friday appointment. Duh!

I've got another business trip coming up... a double trip, actually... I'm flying to Toronto on Sunday, attending meetings Monday and Tuesday, flying to Rochester, Minnesota on Wednesday and spending Thursday and Friday in meetings out there. I'm going to have to cut out of the last part of that a bit early... the Friday afternoon session is scheduled to run until 4:30 and the last possible flight I could catch to get home Friday night leaves at 4:45. (No way am I staying over another night and coming home on Saturday!)

So I call AmEx yesterday and book my airline and hotel reservations, etc. They asked me if I wanted electronic tickets and I automatically said "no" because of bad prior experiences with e-tickets. One airline's computer does not talk with another airline's computer, so if you need to switch airlines you can't use your e-ticket, you have to get a physical ticket printed out. I have been at the gate for departure, had my flight cancelled... but could I just get switched to either of two other flights leaving around that same time for that same destination? No. I had to go back out to the ticketing area and get a hardcopy ticket printed and by the time that was accomplished the other flights had left and I had to wait two hours and travel via a different intermediary airport on my way to my final destination. Ever since then I've generally avoided e-tickets except in cases like USAirways between Providence and Pittsburgh... they're the only airline with direct flights connecting those two airports so I would prefer to wait for their next flight anyway rather than have to fly by way of Philadelphia or Dulles or Newark. [Now, after thinking about this a bit more deeply today, I realize that what I should do in case of a need to change flights like that is just to use my cell phone to call AmEx and rebook on the other airline using electronic ticketing. Duh! again.]

My physical tickets are supposed to be overnight expressed to me so after getting my teeth cleaned (the hygenist said I was doing a very good job of home care... I felt so proud of myself) I went to my office... even though I would have preferred to work from home today (partly to avoid all the Rhode Island drivers on the roads who were shocked and confused by the first snow of the season... and partly because I've got a lot of stuff to do that I won't be able do get to because of this trip)... No envelope in my mail slot... so around noon I check with the mail room... Airbourne had already made their delivery and there was nothing for me. Okay, so I call AmEx and the woman who took my call told me that the delivery was supposed to happen by three o'clock so I should just wait. Now I knew that she was wrong, that our delivery had already taken place and that the guy who came later to pick up our outgoing packages was strictly a pickup guy, no delivery. So about quarter to four I call AmEx again... and the guy says he will track the shipment... hold for a few minutes and he comes back and says that my tickets are apparently in Raleigh (no, they didn't go there by mistake; that's where they originate) and so they will have them delivered to my house on Saturday.

I went luggage shopping on the way home. I have a smaller suitcase that is okay for, say, a three day trip but if I attempt to cram in enough stuff for a five day trip I end up with badly wrinkled clothes. My larger suitcase would be fine for this trip but a main zipper came apart on my last trip (fortunately it failed in the parking lot just a short distance from my car... rather than in the cargo compartment of the airplane)... As I looked at them in the store I was not sure exactly what the sizes so I called home and asked Sean to measure them... the larger one, he told me, measured two and a half feet and the smaller one was one and a half feet... okay, so 30 inches and 18 inches. I selected one that was 27 inches. When I got it home I found that the larger one was exactly the same length as my new one, so obviously there was a bit of an error in his measurement. My new case, however, is a lot wider than the old one, so it should hold more clothes. That's good because I don't think either Toronto or Rochester would exactly be warmer than Rhode Island in mid-December.

I'm not ready to travel. I have so much to do here. Last Sunday we got a Christmas tree and I set it up in the den (which is where we put our tree the past two Christmases). It is a large tree and it looks quite nice there. It also looks quite undecorated... it has sat there all week and has yet to gain a single ornament. I put lights in the front windows... well, the downstairs windows. Upstairs I put lights in our bedroom windows and the hall windows, but have not yet found time to put them in Jennifer's windows... so I've only be plugging in the downstairs lights and not the upstairs ones, so the lighting effect won't look lopsided. Shopping? Are you kidding? Okay, so I've picked up three things that were on Jennifer's list... but that's it. I also bought Christmas cards and stamps on Wednesday but have yet to address a single card. Oh well, I do have tomorrow to accomplish stuff... We are supposed to go to a party Saturday night... and then I guess I have Sunday morning and early afternoon... I said "supposed to go" because Nancy is sick with a very bad cold -- she even phoned in sick today -- and I don't know if she will be feeling up to it. I may go by myself... the party is being given by a co-worker... the last such party (a Halloween party given by a different co-worker) we didn't attend because I was under the weather... I wouldn't want to miss two in a row.

In honor of this being a snowy day, I've scanned in an old photo of me and a snow teddy bear. This picture is about thirty years old.

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