Someone said that the other day. I’m not sure if it was said to me, or to someone else, but I decided it was me. Diane agreed. So, we got outta there toot sweet. Doing that involved riding on an airplane for the first time in a few years.
We had to board the plane at O-dark-thirty last Saturday. I guess that was only yesterday, but a lot has happened in such a short time that it seems like many days ago. Maybe if I share the details it will make more sense to me.
First, we were picked up at 11:30 Friday morning so we could share lunch with a couple of friends who agreed to take us to Portland, but only if we fed them. So, we took them to the St. Helens Elks lodge for lunch. It was really good and we enjoyed a long visit with them.
After that we took the harrowing journey to Embassy Suites, near the Portland International Airport, or PDX to those in the “know”, to spend a painfully short night in a very comfortable bed. The alarm went off at 0430 Saturday morning which gave us an hour to get ourselves to the airport.
We did that by using the available shuttle service on which we were the only passengers. That meant that it was my responsibility to ensure the driver received an adequate tip for her efforts. It was worth it and we made it to the Alaska check in plenty of time.
We only checked two suitcases so you’d think it wouldn’t be much of a big deal. However, one of them was Diane’s and I was a little concerned because it was really heavy. I weighed it on two different scales before leaving the house and pegged it at a little over 50 lbs, the max allowed before penalty fines kicked in. So, we decided to take a chance and check it as is instead of shifting some items to our carry ons. It’s not something I like doing.
When I put the big suitcase on the scales I was disappointed when it came up 59.5 lbs. The agent did some clicking on his keyboard and reported that it would cost us $100 for the overage unless we wished to transfer some things to our other bags. I wasn’t in the mood for that and, besides, Diane had just come in to some money and we thought there was nothing more important at that time than to help Alaska Airlines improve their financial standing in the world. That, and I was pretty sure there was no way I could shift enough “stuff” to make a difference.
When the suitcases were sent on their ways we adjourned to the TSA line which is always a hoot even though we passed the test, and paid the fee to obtain the TSA Pre-check. This day, we were virtually alone in the pre check line so it was a breeze. Before approaching the officers we stopped to eat our bananas but left the muffins we were given in the bag to see what happened. Turns out, muffins aren’t something TSA is interested in so we enjoyed them with our first cup of coffee after cleaning the security line in record time. Then it was off to concourse C to await our flight.
We spent our time in some pretty comfortable chairs then went aboard when called. The flight was uneventful, but it stopped in San Francisco instead of our destination in Palm Springs. Something like 500 miles short of the goal. We actually knew that was going to happen and that we’d be spending an unproductive 4 hours in SFO before continuing on our way. The surprise was the last leg was in a much smaller aircraft. That was fun and also uneventful.
The airport in Palm Springs is right in the middle of town which makes landings interesting.
Our first stop, after baggage claim, was the Dollar car rental place. Abraham helped us drive away in a 2021 Mazda C5. Before we got out of the parking lot a warning popped up on the dash telling us the car was due for an oil change. Diane drove it to the office and we returned it and got an upgrade to a 2021 Chevy Blazer. Nice car, but it was dirty. made it out of the parking lot into the city before it, too, popped a notice that it needed an oil change. None of the phone numbers we had produced a person to whom we could talk about this problem so we went to our hotel to get some needed rest.
This morning (Sunday) we went back to the airport and turned the Blazer in and went back to the office to negotiate for another vehicle. After a long wait in the busy terminal, we finally drove off with a 2022 Toyota 4-Runner. Its red, Diane’s favorite color for a car. But, she really likes it. The first place we went was a nearby Super-Duper Walmart where we purchased a stool so she could more easily get in the drivers seat.
Now it’s getting late and time for bed. Diane tuckered herself out scheduling places to go and things to do while we’re here. I’ll be adding photos later when i figure out how to do that.