Don’t miss the other 6 charts at: 7 Snow Day Charts To Help You Weather The Storm
Thank you Moira
The digital read-out on the dash flickers + 22 F.
Where’s the “+”?
It’s dark, and cold, and the day opened with the media blaring: ‘Bombogenesis‘: Northeast Blizzard “Juno” Will Be Fueled By Dramatic Pressure Drop. This is followed with a pre-recorded, public service announcement of impending doom:
This is an important winter storm advisory. A blizzard warning is in effect for the State of Connecticut. It is predicted to bring high winds gusting up to 60 miles per hour. Snow accumulation of 20 to 30 inches is expected. Coastal flooding and high tides are anticipated. Widespread and long duration power outages are expected. Utility crews are prohibited from engaging in repair work until the end of the storm. There will be a travel ban at 9pm this evening.
In 1973, the ’63 GMC Short-Bed Step-Side was outfitted with a block heater. A three-pronged electrical cord dangled from the grill and was plugged in overnight. On most frigid British Columbia mornings, this would be enough to crank up the Chevy after three or four turns and get us to hockey practice.
40 years later, my ignition fires on the first pull, with no dangling cords hanging from the grill. The Gratitude Bus is rolling.
I pull out and accelerate onto I-95. The highway is clear and dry. I’m flowing with traffic. My Ólafur Arnalds’ playlist lands on “Undan Hulu.” I have no idea what Undan Hulu (Icelandic) means but the Cello solo hits a sweet spot. I hit replay, replay and replay in my Monday morning meditation.
Yet, there is no mistaking the dark streak darting in and out of Arnalds’ Cello solo. [Read more…]
Share Inspired by Annie Dillard, Pilgrim at Tinker Creek:
“We bump against another mystery: the inrush of power and light, the canary that sings on the skull. Unless all ages and races of men have been deluded by the same mass hypnotist (who?), there seems to be such a thing as beauty, a grace wholly gratuitous…”
My journey from NYC westward continues. A five hour non-stop flight has morphed into a surreal 2 day experience with stops at JFK (with 2 plane changes), LGA (with full airport evacuation), Detroit and Chicago. This is the last leg of the journey. (Prior posts for this trip are referenced below along with the post dedication.)
The 45 minute hop from Detroit to Chicago was quiet. No chop. A Quiet cabin. Light snow was falling in Chicago carpeting the catering trucks and the luggage carriers. A slender, stoop-shouldered man guided the aircraft in. His hoodie was covered in snow. His fluorescent batons offered a soft illumination. It’s feeling a lot like Christmas Eve. In February.
The City that works. The Machinery was humming this evening. Plows. Sand trucks. Baggage handlers. Crew. De-icers coating the aircraft in a lemon colored bath. A beautiful orchestra. All to get us somewhere safely. I’m feeling gratitude.
My Son was born here. In Chicago. I burroughed deep and back to find a moment. Susan is pulling him on a red sled to greet me as I walk home from the train station returning from work. His chubby cheeks are red. His hair is matted and wet from layers of clothing. His smile…a lighthouse beacon. His arms reaching up. “Dada! Dada!” I reach down to grab him. I hold him close. I can feel his warm breath on my neck as he nuzzles. I miss my son often. And especially when I’m tired. Like now. When the aching just won’t stop.
Cheryl found me eerily calm during this journey. I had many hours to contemplate why. She no longer covered my business and left about the time I started blogging. This hobby. This community. This labor of love. This stringing of words together and having someone actually care to read it. A miracle drug. It stills and softens the mind. It injects peace where none formerly existed. Albert Camus said “In order to understand the world, one has to turn away from it on occasion.” This. THIS allows me to turn away from the world.
My finger lingers over the Publish button. The cabin is dark with the exception of a handful of us hunched over our screens. 35,000 feet in the air, my wireless icon is flashing. I’m wired.
It’s a miracle. All of it.
Me. Family. Our dog. Friends. You, yes you, reading this. This iPad. My Eye sight. This plane flying. Pizza. (I’m famished.)
All of it.
Too big to figure out.
Too important not to find a small corner of it to call my own.
My finger hovers over the Publish button again. Proof read it again? Is it too much? Is it over the top? Is it good enough?
Friend, you’re asking yourself the wrong question. The only question that matters to help you decide if you should hit Publish:
Is it a miracle?
Same trip – related posts:
- Just another manic Monday
- Star Log: Flight DL2282. The Epilogue.
- Flight Log DL1131: Y.C.M.T.S.U.
- Flight Log: Motor City USA
This post is dedicated to Shara who worked tirelessly behind the scenes to book and re-book flights, get seat assignments, and keep me moving forward to my destination at all hours of the day and night. Thank you Shara.
My journey from NYC westward continues. A five hour non-stop flight has morphed into a surreal 2 day experience with stops at JFK (with 2 plane changes), LGA (with full airport evacuation) and now Detroit. There are still two legs to go however let’s camp out in Detroit for a moment. (Prior posts for this trip are referenced below.)
Heading to MotorCity USA.
We are descending on a gentle, clockwise turn into Detroit Metro. The pilot touches the giant bird down – a 30 ton sparrow gliding into her feathered nest.
I catch myself humming a tune from one of Detroit’s finest: Seger.
I think I’m going to Katmandu,
That’s really, really where I’m going to.
If i ever get out of here,
That’s what I’m gonna do.
I step out of the jetway at Detroit Metro Airport. It’s gleaming. Lined with wine bars, a Spa, a Suishi Bar and a Online Café. My lungs are pulling me to the aromatic L’Occitane En Provence body soaps drifting onto the walkway. I’m traipsing through a meadow in the South of France.
I’ve lolly gagged over to Gate 38. My flight leaves from Gate 30. Plenty of time.
Then. I stop.
I’m in the Delta Terminal. I missed my connection from Detroit due to delays out of NYC. Shara re-booked me on American Airlines: DET – CHI – West. Yes, another painful connection via Chicago but we’re advancing.
I’m in the wrong terminal. My heart is racing. This “miss” is on me.
I need to take a shuttle bus. The Blue Shuttle to the North Terminal.
I glance at my watch. 5:00 pm. Flight departure is 5:40. Still no shuttle. I’m rattled. Sweet Jesus.
I arrive at the North Terminal. 5:20. Agent states that the final gate call has been made. “You need to hurry.” I get through security and run to the gate. A-30. Last gate in the wing down a long corridor. Natch.
5 passengers are left to board. And 3 others hover by the desk…Wait List passengers hoping for no-shows.
I hand the Agent my boarding pass and my ID.
Agent: Sir, you are now booked on the next flight.
DK: Can you please check again?
Agent: Sir, you are on 8 pm flight. It’s right here on your boarding pass.
DK: Ma’am, I have a reservation on the 5:40 pm flight to Chicago connecting to another flight heading West at 8pm. The boarding pass is wrong. Please check again.
Agent: Sir, did you check in late at the ticket counter? Your boarding pass has you ticketed for the next flight. These other Wait List passengers are now entitled to a seat because you arrived late at the gate.
DK: (PAUSE) Ma’am, I don’t want to be difficult. Can you please do me a favor? It will only take you a minute. Check my flight connection out of Chicago. If I miss this flight, I miss my connecting flight. (I lean forward and whisper. She leans in.) Then, would you kindly check my mileage status and my lifetime miles on your fine airline? Then, I might suggest that you can make an informed decision whether or not to bump me in favor of these other passengers that didn’t have a confirmed seat.
The Waiting area passengers have been watching the show with interest. So what’s it going to be? The Rules or the pushy Mustachio Slav from NY.
The gate area is Silent but for the Agent tapping on her keyboard.
Agent: Mr. Kanigan, you’ll be seated in Seat 11c. Thank you for flying American.
Off we go to Chi-Town.
Same trip – related posts:
My journey from NYC to the West continues. A five hour flight is now rolling into 2 days and I’m still on the ground in New York. If you missed yesterday’s excitement, the posts can be found here: Just another manic Monday and here: Star Log: Flight DL2282. The Epilogue.
And, the journey continues:
- 10:00 am. Back in car this morning. This time to LaGuardia Airport. Gorgeous day. One would have no idea of the pandemonium caused by Mother Nature yesterday. (Feeling Good!)
- 10:50 am. Made good time. Head for Kiosk to get boarding pass. Message blinking telling me to see agent. (Nope. Not going to ruin my day today. Just a minor technicality)
- 11:25 am. Still with ticket agent. She’s struggling to issue a boarding pass for second leg of the trip. After 20 minutes of working it, she looks up sheepishly, grins, and says: “Why don’t you just have it issued at the gate in Detroit?” I stare at her. She can read me. “He looks like he’s on the edge. He’s smiling but he’s teetering. And any Man with the confidence to be wearing that grey streaky mustache, isn’t likely to be sold ‘The-get-your-boarding-pass-in-Detroit-B.S.-Story’ I’m selling.” Yet, The Man walks away shaking his head and mumbling. Agent breathes deeply…having avoided a sure fire confrontation with some crazy Slav looking mustachio.
- 11:35 am. I’m through security without incident with a vice grip on my driver’s license, watch and wallet. No bloody mishaps today.
- 12:00 pm. First call for boarding.
- 12:05 pm. Announcement blares on intercom. “All passengers, crew and employees must immediately evacuate the building. All passengers, crew, and employees must evacuate the building!” The reason: hit this link.
- 12:45 pm. Thousands rush back into the terminal and file through security check-in (again).
- 1:30 pm. Boarded flight. Plane 1/2 empty. Announcement explaining the delay: waiting for two ticketed passengers (tools?) to make it back through security after the evacuation. (This is NY people. This was a sputtering flare. Get on the damn aircraft.)
- 1:45 pm. We push back from gate
- 2:00 pm. Captain: “We have a problem with our Nose gear. We need to get a tow back to the gate to have our maintenance crew check it out. I’m sorry folks but we can’t fly without this fix.” (Nose gear is malfunctioning! Really? WTF. NFW. You need Nose Gear right? I then grab my nose and wonder if I need my nose hair clipped.)
- 2:15 pm. Waiting for tow. (2 flights out West from Detroit. I’ve missed my scheduled connection. Closing in on “timing out” of Plan B.)
- 2:30 pm. Jet engines powered down. And we sit. (You’re testing me People. You’re testing me.)
Note to Self: DK, they’re thinkin’ you’ve moved to fiction writing because you can’t make this sh*t up. (*Y.C.M.T.S.U.)