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Tuesday, August 02, 2005

Conference Recap: The Journey Home

When the alarm went off Sunday morning, the last thing I wanted to do was move. So I didn't. Not for a whole half of an hour, then I had to hurry. The pain was intense. My back, hip and legs hurt like hell on fire, and I needed to shower, dress and pack before I left for the airport. My goal was to leave the hotel room at 9:45. I got out of there at 10:15. It took three elevators before I found one empty enough to get on with the big suitcase. Luckily, the line up at the check out counter was moving fast.

My luck ran out when I stepped out of the hotel. There was a line waiting for the shuttle. I eyed it for a moment, then decided to take a cab to the airport--it wasn't that far. Another conference attendee had the same idea and we shared a taxi.

I checked in and was asked if I wanted to volunteer my seat. I was actually thinking about it before it occurred to me that I'd have to be an idiot to do this. Not only was I in a lot of pain, but I'd have to stay another night at the hotel and fly home through Salt Lake City--with a broken foot. I declined.

The plane was absolutely packed, which meant I had someone beside me. It made the flight home a lot more uncomfortable than the flight in since I couldn't move around a whole lot. Sigh. Give me first class any day of the week. I almost dozed off a couple of times on the plane, but unfortunately, didn't fall asleep. The plane ride seemed to last an eternity. Then we landed, and as I stood up, I learned what pain really is.

By the time I made it to baggage claim, all the suitcases were down. I had to wait 20 minutes longer to get picked up and the airport was a zoo! By the time I reached home, I could barely walk. If I'd been moving at quarter speed since breaking my foot, I was probably moving at 1/32nd speed when I walked into the house. The whimpers were so unattractive, but it hurt to move even a tiny bit.

Edited to add: I almost forgot my semi-interesting airport story! As I was waiting outside of baggage claim for my parents to pick me up, a woman stopped the cop patrolling with an automatic weapon (=8-O I'd never seen that before!) and pointed out a suitcase next to her that had been left unattended. The officer checked around, but it didn't belong to anyone, so he checked it out and then wheeled it away. That was the only break in the tedium of my wait.

I had another bout of insomnia on Sunday night and was up early on Monday even though I had the day off. Despite the high heat (it was in the 90's) and the high humidity, I sat with a heating pad against my back all day long. It helped some, but I'm still hurting even now. Instead of putting my stuff away, it's laying all over the floor. Laundry is done, but lying out, waiting to be put away too. I figure that's not happening any time real soon. If I thought the insomnia was bad Sunday, it was nothing compared to Monday night. I literally did not sleep--not even for 5 minutes. So I'm chugging the jumbo cup of coffee today and hoping for the best.

To put the icing on the cake, today is the day I have to go to the doctor for a pre-surgery physical. Gah! And I still don't have the forms from the doctor that I need to turn in to my boss to get the time off from work. I sicced my dad on him last week while I was in Reno and they're sitting with their thumbs up their asses, apparently. Which really improves my already stellar mood--pain makes me cranky as hell.

MN Weather Report: 75 degrees. Very, very humid. On our way to 96 degrees with a heat index over 100. Gah!