lundi, novembre 20, 2006

Limbo: My Day in George Bush !@#$ing International Airport

So, after nearly 10 hours in the air from Honolulu, with fitful sleep and my contacts nearly glued to my eyeballs, we arrived in Houston, TX. After the madness of catching my connecting flight on the way to Honolulu, I took a certain pleasure in watching everyone around me freak out as they realized their plane was leaving in 10 minutes while I sauntered slowly off the plane. On the other hand I had an 11-hour layover. In other words, I spent last night on a red-eye flight, I would be spending this night on a red-eye flight, and I had 11 hours to spend in GEORGE BUSH INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT in Houston, Texas. Heaven help me.

The first thing I did was pull out my contacts. Then, I pulled out my laptop and looked for wireless networks. Sprint PCS offered something for a relatively reasonable amount of money, so I signed myself up. Or rather, I tried to sign myself up. The stupid registration/purchase page of Sprint's contained poorly-written code that caused it to break in both Safari and Firefox/Mozilla. Eventually, I found an old version of Opera browser that would accept the antiquated code and I was online. I immediately started looking for information on transportation. If I have 11 hours to myself, I might as well see a bit of Houston; perhaps breathe some non-recycled air.

Alas, there was nothing but prohibitively-expensive taxis and prohibitively-slow buses to get me out of here, so I braced myself for a day of terminal-surfing. I got some coffee, found a seat near a power outlet (I wonder how much airports pay to charge people's laptops?) and surfed the web. When I had read every single blog I could think of and browsed every bit of news I could find, I got on Blogger and started back-blogging the previous days.

Which reminds me that I had forgotten to blog about an amusing theme to my time in Hawaii. After some amusing bedtime stories during our first night together at the hotel, Andrew and Greg and I had developed something of an inside joke involving apparently platonic friendship and "spooning." I'm not going to give details, to protect the innocent-ish, but rest assured that it was funny. Anyway, Andrew and Greg and I spent the rest of the weekend dropping the theme into casual conversation in a way that was probably familiar to our U of Chicago friends, but probably bewildering and/or titillating to the rest. At one point, we were eating sushi in a large group, and Andrew and I were having some sort of discussion over who was going to spoon who that night. A moment later, our very own Shayna had to explain to a new acquaintance at the table that Andrew and I were not a couple; it's just that Luis (me) engenders homoerotic innuendo wherever he goes. And she's right, of course. But what I enjoyed most about seeing my U of Chicago compatriots in Honolulu was how I had already saturated them so well with my dirty, queer sense of humor, they began to produce the innuendo for me. More than once, someone else in the group would "go there" well before I did. I appreciate not having to do all the heavy-lifting in the maintenance of the level of discourse. And I love the idea that my legacy to the U of C cohort will probably be a filthy, filthy sense of humor.

So that's it. Aside from this brief flashback, I have nothing else to say about my time in Houston, and that is precisely what was horrible about it. I just sat in terminal lounges, checking my mail periodically, and eventually snacking on horrible airport food. Eventually, 6:50pm came around and I traipsed onto my next plane, bound for Paris...

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