Archive for December, 2008

By Air

Saturday, December 27th, 2008

Went to San Jose for Christmas with my daughter and family. We flew from Providence to there thru Las Vegas.   Never did get a chance to play the slots at the airport.  The flight out hit a 150 knot headwind and we only had a few minutes to make a connection - so missed that time.  Southwest Airlines still got us to San Jose on time.   

On the way back we had a 2 hour layover - so figured we would have planty of time.  When we got in we looked at the departure monitor and found out that instead of a 2 hour layover,  our flight would be delayed for 4 more hours - arriving at around 4AM.   There was a lot of snow in the north and the northwest.  We went to a desk and signed up for standby for a delayed flight that would get us to Providence via Baltimore. Since we figured we had a small chance to get on, we decided to grab lunch  - by the time we got back to the gate we got called and made it…  Good lesson - always check the monitor immediately.  The people that grabbed a beer and lunch before checking the monitor probably didn’t make the standby list. 

Of course with Southwest’s open seating, we were close to last in line to pick out seats.   I really like the aisle seats - there were none in sight.  I spotted what looked like a young couple with a coat in the middle seat and told them the plane was full and would they mind if I sat in that seat  - she moved over so I had an aisle seat   - SCORE!!  Another lesson  - look for a couple.

We did get to see the Grand Canyon from the air on both flights  - pretty impressive with the snow on the tops.  Las Vegas is interesting from the air.  I have not spent much time in deserts. Arond here - if land is vacant there are trees. Out there - it just seems vacant.     The town seems to be built block by block.  There are full blocks next to empty space.    In New England - people seem to spread out more - of course water is not as much of a problem.

 We got into Providence at around 1:30 AM -  that was 10:30 Pacific time  - not too bad. Home and in bed by 3AM.   Some jet (sleep) lag today. Got up on time to pick up Effie at 9.  She stays in a kennel with some friends that raise Newfoundlands - some of the best show dogs in the country - including my buddy Jimmy.    They like her and treat her well.   She was still very happy to get in the car and come home  - big walk and some treats—.

Travels with Charlie

Saturday, December 27th, 2008

Got a great book for my birthday - “Travels With Charlie” by John Steinbeck.  Wish I could write like that.  It is about taking an pickup camper across America in the early 60’s with a dog named Charlie.  He writes a lot about his dog and the people he meets - some as a result of traveling with Charlie.    Would have loved to see a lot of pictures - but he writes so well, some of the characters are easy to visualize.  I will have to include a lot more photos.

I have only read the book about the Sea of Cortez by him.  He has a great description of an outboard motor that I have permanently bookmarked.

Laptop

Wednesday, December 24th, 2008

Stopped in a big electronics store in San Jose and looked at the laptops. We are pretty convinced that we will get a laptop during the after Christmas sales  - know there will be some good bargains then.  We are concerned about the size of the screen - probably 15 - 17″.  It seems like the bigger ones weigh about the same as the smaller ones - and the bigger ones may be easier to balance on your lap and of course they will be easier to see - and show DVDs on.  We also found a nice mount by Auto Desk.   You can use it to hang over the steering wheel when you are parked - or hang it over the back of a seat - and it looks like you could sit it on the dash on the passenger side.   That may be easier than making one.

It seems that any of the decent laptops will do all that we need for a traveling computer. We are not into the spectacular computer games that need a huge amount of everything.