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Sunday, September 25, 2005
7:19 a.m. - LAX - LOS ANGELES, Calif.
(To figure out what's happening, you'll likely want to start reading the post titled "And so begins an adventure...", and work your way backwards up the page. --Guy)
• Continental Flight 194 leaves the gate for Houston, TX.
The alarm went off at 4:15. I got up, took a shower and dressed. I'd checked the weather for Houston and it said hot, and 85% humidity, which I learned was "below normal."
I made my final preparations, like adding the now charged shaver to the pack, and packing up the freshly-charged Powerbook and iPods. I left the house at about 4:58, and sped down the 405 freeway from Sherman Oaks, towards LAX. The beautiful thing about LA traffic is when it's 5 a.m. on a Sunday morning. The roads are just congested, not parking lots.
Parking Lot C at LAX sounded like a good idea, so I arrived there around 5:20 or so (yes, I'd made good time...), caught first one shuttle bus, then another, until I was dropped off at Terminal 6 at LAX.
At first, nobody seemed to know of my reservation, confirmation code, or anything. Even the computer decided I didn't exist. Only after realizing that the confirmation code contained an "O" and not a "0" was I able to check my bags, and legitimacy my boarding passes.
My luggage looked a bit odd, as I had a large duffel, and smaller bag. The smaller bag was typical "carry-on" size, but actually contained all the essentials. The duffel had a sleeping bag, queen size air mattress, air pump, inflatable pillows, air mattress sheet/blanket combo, towel and washcloth, toolbox (of tools), and extra shoes. I didn't know what I'd need.
Now for security.
I've often thought that I should just show up nude at the airport, just to make a point about going through security. But, that wasn't needed today. I just had to strip to my shirt, undies, and shorts. No belts, no pocket items, no sandals, and of course, the Powerbook HAD to be out of the bag.
Everything was okay, except my backpack. And here the fun began. My backpack was searched, every inch. I guess they're not used to people carrying an external harddrive, lots of extra rechargeable batteries, battery charger, digital camera, CD player, iPods, headphones, digital camera media, variety of cables, DVDs, CDs, a radio, deodorant, toothbrush, other backup toiletries, keys and keychains, and various and other assorted "odd" items.