milieu of humid strangeness

"So how did it go," you ask?

I type this, looking down at the clock on the right-hand side of my computer's display. 6:38. I have a little bit of time, but not much. Today I really need to get out of here as early as possible, because I'm taking a long (paid) break in the middle of the day. My houseguest flies home today, and I'm not going to pass up the chance to have one last, lazy, caffeinated lunch with him before taking him to the airport and getting that quiet little lump in my throat I get every time I put someone I care about on a plane.

Coda: Frances, part II

After fewer than four hours of sleep, I was on the road again. I'd been shaken awake with a jolt, and I was dressed and charging headlong into Brian and Suzan's kitchen before I'd really awakened. We headed out, Jake and Chris and I, in the middle of one of the worst thunderstorms I've ever driven through. Brian and Suzan's road more closely resembled a moat, and getting to I-20 represented a difficult tightrope balance of caution and insanity.

It's time.

Time to go.

The bags are packed, the kitty-sitters have directions, the staff database has been nudged and massaged into its final form, and everything that can be done for DCTV has been done.

My preparation for dragon*con 2004 began in January of this year. It ends--at last!--tomorrow morning, when I stow my bags in the car and do one of the things I love best: drive.

Colorado #1: fortunate woman

"Stretch your hands out, spread your feet apart, and look straight ahead."

It was a formality, really. Sure, wand me down. I wasn't carrying anything metal; I know better than to do that in the age of burning planes and buildings. (I only taunt fate in ways that don't matter.) The only metal on my body was the clasp holding my jeans together.I don't like taking my wedding and engagement bands off, but they were in the smallest compartment of my backpack, nestled in with my spare change in the hopes of making them harder to find by anyone who might choose to rifle through my pack. In the dance to prepare for the airport security check, they are the last things to come off, after the watch and the shoes, and the first to be put back on.

Geekfest. Once again.

It's that time of year, when friends start magically appearing from far corners of the country, gathering for a weekend in which we really don't have a lot of stuff actually planned.

I picked up Gareth tonight at the airport, fresh in from the other side of the planet. The Atlanta->Huntsville flight was early, as usual, and Gareth actually arrived at the Huntsville airport before I did. He was at the baggage claim counter, calmly speaking with an attendant."Where will you be staying while you're here?" she asked. Gareth turned to me, and I recited my address.

"Lost a bag, eh?"


"How many?"

"Only one I checked. I saw it in Atlanta, though, so I know it at least made it to the States." A bit of a relief, that; always nice to know what continent your luggage is on. "I did pack things like a razor and whatnot in my carryon, so it's not like I'll be desperate in the meantime."

Venus rising

Leaving is never so easy as saying hello.
The whippoorwill outside my window tunes its song
as the sun readies itself for its morning stretch
vaguely past the eastern horizon.

The odometer respools as you stare ahead,
counting bags or trinkets—or layovers—in your mind,
while I search for the correct iteration
of farewell for you.

Your flight leaves in forty minutes,
in which time you must complete the march
from counter to metal detector to counter, again,
while I take the car and drive back home,

with the knowledge that the space of a weekend