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Day 274: Weathering The Weather

Thanks to United Airlines, not only did I leave New Orleans for the Midwest 1.5 days later than originally intended, but also was forced to stay up here for another 24 hours due to extended Wheels Up time in stormy Chicago. While I am inclined to believe the offered explanation, United and Chicago O’Hare doth a bad combination make. American and Continental took off for the same destinations and on time; why not us? Come on, folks, here’s some Dramamine, let’s go! Damn the rain, I’m flying.

You know you’re an adult when airplane travel no longer provides happiness, much less glee.

This isn’t simply about the expenditure of long hours waiting as a standby passenger or missing work. While these are two exceptionally awful time-wasters, they only increase my days away from New Orleans. I’ve a city to go back to. Yet, I have a car to tune up, provisions to purchase, friends to spend time and coordinate with, hurricanes to watch for, evacuation calls to deride. Every moment back home is now precious.

The blog was quiet for the past few days while I visited with and traipsed around Amish country with my parents (read: more labor than computer geeks are accustomed to). But, that wasn’t the only reason for the silence. This was the last weekend before the next hurricane season. The irrational fear (as opposed to the rational kind) sets in. I know:

  • Chill, be cool, breathe. Don’t create an emotional hurricane in lieu of a real one. Apologies, but the anxiety has risen over the past year, for obvious reasons.
  • I am a scientist. I should think like one. Before Ivan, there were no large-scale evacuations for at least 20 years. Again, what are the odds of the recurrence of a Katrina with multiple levee failure, social discombobulation and all? The scientific job description, fortunately or otherwise, does not include “devoid of emotion.” We could be at Square One again. From a more pragmatic standpoint, how many work and personal projects do I begin before city operations are shut down for two weeks or more? A lot of us are still in recovery from last year’s stalled programs.
  • There is a realm beyond my control.

Go. Work. Do. Produce. Keep going. Live. I’m ready for it. It doesn’t seem ready for me.

5 comments… add one
  • ashley May 29, 2006, 11:33 PM

    Maitri, I have to make that trip every single week. I’m making it at 7:00 tomorrow for the last time this quarter. At least starting June 10, Southwest will be flying nonstop to Midway. That will help a little bit.

  • Sophmom May 30, 2006, 9:32 AM

    I think everyone feels a little strange, embarking on this hurricane season. After nine months of managing benchmark to benchmark, the next one looms ominously. I wrote about it too.

    As for air travel, I try not to. I spent nearly seven years working on MississippiRiverLand’s airplanes and learned more than I wish to know. *sigh*

  • Sophmom May 30, 2006, 9:34 AM

    Oh, BTW, MississippiRiverLand is not its real name. ;)

  • Mark May 30, 2006, 1:47 PM

    United and Chicago, NorthWest and Minneapolis, hell holes all.

    Thanks for giving some credence to what I tell my wife, my in-laws, my children and myself: statistically, the chances of a a Cat 3 or greater direct hit remain about the same. The last big blow before Ivan were Camille and Betsy, a lifetime ago, and the last before that in the 1940s.

    We are going to make it. We just have to hold the Corps feet to the fire (or the more apropos hold their head under water) until they do what is required, and meanwhile figure out how to (every so slowly) rebuild a city.

  • Julie May 30, 2006, 7:35 PM

    I was wondering if you’d made it or not. I texted Matt a while after talking to you, and he said it had started raining in Chi-town.

    Fie upon that!

    Did we ever establish the contacts you need should you have to evacuate to Baton Rouge while I’m not there?

    p.s. Oddly enough, my parents were also traipsing around Amish country this weekend. I guess it’s the thing to do.

    p.p.s. You’ve haven’t made ME any Indian food yet (but that’s because booze always interrupts any responsible plans we have)

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