It’s been a while since I’ve had some time to sit down and write out a post. Last week, I had a business trip out to Richmond, Virginia; so taking the opportunity, I also flew up to New York to visit Jason, Claire, and my newborn godson Jackson. Getting back to LA Monday morning, I went to work for a few hours then went home. More parts for the subie came in so I did up those mods before crashing out. Yesterday, I got some paint on the diorama base. This post will be a mishmash of things starting last week.
A few weeks ago, I got an email about an all hands meeting, which I promptly accepted and thought nothing else of it as normally, it would just be a teleconference; but later that afternoon, I got another email from my local manager setting up a meeting to talk about the “logistics” of the all hands. Uh oh. A few things ran through my head. It’s the end of the fiscal year and there is money that needs to be burnt. So the entire west coast division, about 9 of us, will need to fly out to Richmond, VA for a “meeting” and some “training”. The date to fly out is September 27. My only problem is that well over a month prior, I had picked up tickets for the opening night gala event for the Disney Concert Hall’s LA Philharmonic season. Not wanting to just throw these tickets away, I get authorization to take the red eye. I just need to get into Richmond in time for the meetings. Since I’ll be on the East Coast, and Jason and Claire just gave birth in August to my godson, Jackson; the trip also works out as I can just extend my stay and visit them for the weekend before flying back to LA.
September 27 rolls around and I take the day off as it’s considered a travel day. I’m packed and I take the dogs over to Yuki’s place. A quick shower and dressing up, I’m off to the Concert Hall. I meet up with Yuki there and we have an incredibly overpriced dinner at the hall. Granted we could have gone somewhere in downtown, but the traffic was horrific as they’d closed down a strip of Grand for the evening’s event. Herbie Hancock and Gustavo Dudamel play Gershwin, starting with the Cuban Overture, followed by An American in Paris. Herbie Hancock does a few improvs on a Gershwin theme before ending the concert with Rhapsody in Blue.
The concert was amazing. We facing the back of the orchestra, which faces Gustavo Dudamel during the performance. A very interesting view point, and it was very fun to watch Dudamel’s style of conducting. Since I had a red eye that night at 11:00pm, Yuki and I got up to leave as soon as Rhapsody in Blue completed. We avoided the people and vehicular traffic. The concert ended earlier than I had expected, but was happy that it did so I didn’t miss my flight. I parked the subie at the LAX Hilton and took the shuttle over to the airport, went through security and got to the terminal with plenty of time to charge up my phone and relax a bit before boarding the flight.
I slept for most of the flight to Detroit where I had about an hour and change of layover for the second leg of the trip to Richmond. We get in around 9 and after getting a rental car, a co worker that was on the same flights as I, headed into the Richmond office. Nothing too exciting, a few meetings, chatting with some of the folks there and getting a small amount of work done. The second day was much the same. All in all, the travel budget just needed to be emptied.
Another coworker and I rented a car and drove up to Washington DC. I was dropped off at Dulles to catch my flight to New York. I picked up a carton of cigarettes for Jason as they were fairly cheap in Virginia. $30 bucks for a carton, for which in NYC, a single pack of the same cigarettes was about $10. Here’s to contributing to my friend’s bad health.
New York was relaxing. I spent time with my godson and the family just hanging out. I did all the fun little touristy crap the last time I was out there. But one night, when it stopped raining for a bit, Jason took me all the way out to New Jersey to snap pictures of New York from a different angel that I was shooting the last time. This was a much better spot, albeit an hour drive from where Jason lived. But I got some damn nice shots and was able to snap pictures using different settings getting a bunch of cool effects. For some shots, I grabbed the 100-300 zoom lens and effectively pulled some of NYC’s buildings close.
We drove down to the shore line and I snapped a few pictures here too. I think I liked the upper level angel better.
Sunday was spent at Claire’s cousin’s house where they have a roof top spot for bbqs. The weathering in the early afternoon was great and perfect. The wind picked up here and there, but we cooked, finished eating, then put everything away right as the rain came back. Here are some shots from the roof.
We were relaxing when I remembered that I needed to check in for my flight back home that evening. So I checked in, but wasn’t given a boarding pass option sent to my phone like some of my previous flights on Delta. Since I didn’t have a printer on hand, I usually just have the boarding pass sent to my phone. But for some reason or another, that option wasn’t listed on the site. I didn’t think too much about it. But while checking in, I did notice that there was another flight that left 2 hours before my original flight. A quick charge of $50 bucks and I changed my flight. I got a seat number, but again, no option for the boarding pass. Not a big deal, I figured I’d just go to the airport and print one out at the kiosks. I did it when I left Richmond to New York. Anyways, after hanging out for a bit, Jason took me back to the house to grab my stuff and we headed off to the airport.
What normally takes 15 minutes from his house to JFK took twice as long as there was an accident that slowed everything down. I get to the terminal at about 6:10 and headed to the kiosk to print out the pass. The kiosk responds that it cannot print my pass, as I’m too late for a check in; but I had already checked in at 4. I get to the counter to voice my complaint that I’m told that I arrived too late to check in… The idiot behind the counter even tells me that they can see that I checked in at 4pm, but then I attempted to check in again around 6:14 (which was my attempt to print out my boarding pass). WTF, they’re unable to print my pass and tell me that my seat was probably already sold to someone else. Seriously, WHAT THE FUCK?!? The next option is to sit on standby for the 9:00 flight for which I was originally booked. Apparently both flights were overbooked (I smell lawsuit).
Regardless, not even the 1st person on the standby list made it on the 9:00 flight, and I was sitting at 10th. I’m pretty pissed off. I go and make sure that I’m checked in and on the first flight out at 7:00. After settling all this, I sit and just let my anger slowly dissipate from extremely volatile to fairly perturbed. Jason calls me to see if I want to be picked up during my anger suppression attempt, so I waved him off telling me that I need to be away from people. The airport was the perfect place to keep my anger in check. The urges to kick apart the chairs, to throw a row of chairs out the terminal window, or to just stomp out the little glow of idiotic synapses from their vacant eyes; is all placed under control because I’m still rational enough to know that the consequences of such actions. I hung out until about 11:30 and Jason came and picked me up. Good thing too as I had left my phone charger and a sweater at the house in my rush to pack up things and head to the airport 6 hours prior.
I spent time doing laundry and took quick naps between the wash and dry cycles. I wanted to leave the house around 4 just to make sure I don’t miss my flight. I get my boarding pass and the monkey behind the counter just has no emotions when I relay my story of the previous night. Yeah, I think I’ll send Delta’s customer service a nice little letter of my experience. Guess I won’t be flying them anymore. Fuck them, fuck them in their fucking clown shoes. Regardless, I get on my flight and pretty much pass out for the 5 hours and change that was the flight. Getting into LAX, I go and pick up my car and head to work. I’m not too tired, a red eye is definitely more tiring than an early morning flight. The flight over counted as a travel day, so I only did about 5 hours at work before heading home to do other errands.
Getting home, the boxes of subie parts greet me, and the temptation to install the parts get the better of me. I got the fog light kit that replaces the turn signal/headlight switch assembly. I also baked the light and installed CCFL halos. I originally had the halos connected to the high beam/day time driving light, but yesterday, changed this out and connected it to the parking lights. I also installed an internal lighting system that lights up the passenger and driver foot bays that work with the headlights. Some quick pictures of the halos follow.
Next up, I did get some work on the GM dio base during this week. I patched up some loose areas with celluclay. Last night, I sprayed a light tan over the entire base. Next up will be the detail work on the base.