Cruel Irony

It's been over two weeks since my oral surgery and everything has progressed without issue. However, on the very day I can start eating whatever I want I come down with a head cold so that I can't taste anything anyway.

Squash Faces

The Tournament of Champions, one of professional squash's biggest annual events, is currently getting under way in downtown manhattan at Grand Central. I've been following the draw and how some predicted outcomes have played out along with the rare upset here and there. In looking at the pictures, however, I've found something far more interesting: The faces people make while playing.

Oh, Cañada

I had a checkup this morning at my periodontist to see how the gum surgery sites are progressing. They're doing just fine, and thankfully I'm feeling pretty good too. Good enough to finally get out and exercise after being housebound for quite a while. By which I mean I biked from the periodontist's office all the way to work along a route that is nowhere near direct but quite scenic. A map can me found here. There are some good climbs at the beginning and end of the ride as I go over the ridge in between the main population centers to the East and the resevoir and watershed to the West. The hilight was definitely the ride along cañada road right next to the resevoir with an untouched valley surrounding me. 
The bike ride ended up being 20 miles (including the ride to the periodontist), and it's clear that I've been a little lax in my exercise. My legs shouldn't feel this tired!

Mr. President

Maybe it was the narcotics, but I started to tear up a little when I thought I heard someone say "...and will to the best of my ability preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States." and fully understand what that meant. 

I Have Vicodin

Well, I don't technically have it yet but I have a prescription for it. I just got home from some minor gum surgery. It was an interesting experience. Far and away the worst part was getting the shot of Novocaine to the roof of my mouth, which hurt worse than anything in recent memory. After that, however, it was just me lying back for an hour or so as the surgeon and her assistant went to work.

The bus ride back turned out to be much more eventful. At the stop where I waited to pick up the bus there was an elderly woman standing in the shade of a rather large sign. Seeing as there was room for at least 3 people in said shade I decided to wait there with her. Once I got within 4 feet, however, she started pacing around away from me mumbling about how "... oh sure just walk right up behind me not two inches away christ god almighty go right ahead and take the whole shade for yourself lousy young man I wouldn't have invaded your personal space like that why did that happen oh geeze...". Now, I had just come out of surgery but Novocaine and Ibuprofen were the only drugs I was under the effect of. I suspected she was quite crazy, so I went and hung out in some shade 40 feet away.

A nice little hilight to the end of the bus ride, however, was that I got to both use some Mandarin and help a kind old lady out (not the crazy one). She got on, and was talking to another rider in Mandarin about how tired she was and how the full bus was a pain with all her accoutrements. I was getting off the bus a few stops after she got on so I stood up up, surprised her with "Mam, would you like to sit down?" in her native tongue, and watch the confusion turn to comprehension, realization, and then the warm happiness that only the timeless face of eldery asians seem to manage.

In Memoriam: My Christmas

Here is a list of the things that went wrong on my week off at Christmas, as they happened.

Dec 20th
  1. Flight to Boston cancelled, rebooked two days later.
  2. 1 hour spent with American Airlines trying to get rebooked earlier.
  3. 2 hours spent wandering various checkin lines to see if another carrier will get me to Boston any earlier. Get rebooked on a red-eye through Toronto with Air Canada one day later.
Dec 21st
  1. Get up at 5am to go to the airport.
  2. Pay taxi to airport with debit card. Forget debit card in taxi.
  3. Get on flight to Toronto without issue.
  4. Land in Toronto where it snows all day, but the Canadians know how to deal with inclement winters and are unfazed. Their timely arrivals/departures show this.
  5. Due to my quasi-international flight, I have to pick up my checked luggage at special baggage claim.
  6. The suitcase with all my warm clothes and gifts for others did not make it to the special baggage claim.
  7. After talking with baggage service, I exit through security and check normal baggage claims for my missing suitcase. No luck.
  8. Go back through security and wait for my flight to Boston.
  9. Boston is not as good with the snow, and my flight from Toronoto to Boston leaves 7 hours later and gets in at 1am. I then must fill out a missing baggage form.
  10. Thankfully, a couple of friends who are informed of my trials have offered to pick me up at the airport.
Dec 22nd
  1. As I didn't travel on this day, I had a great time hanging out with friends, visiting Athena, and getting some nice beer at John Harvard's.
Dec 23rd
  1. A day in Boston with the nuclear family. It's quite interesting and sometimes quite fun, but everyone involved is tired so we're a little on edge. Another 2.5 hours spent in a car driving from Boston to my parents' home in New Hampshire.
Dec 24th-25th
  1. A couple of restful days spent in NH with the family. This was a relaxing period. Unfortunately, I had fallen ill from the loss of sleep and exposure to others in airports.
  2. I get a phone call from baggage services telling me they can't deliver my suitcase with all the gifts for my family until Friday, the day I return to Boston.
Dec 26th
  1. My brother was already driving back to Boston from NH to fly back to California, so I hitched a ride with him, planning to meet up with some friends and spend the next two nights in Boston.
  2. I spend 15 hours walking around Boston with a 40lb. trekking backpack full of clothes and received gifts on my back. This is not all bad, however, as the exercise is nice and I get to see a lot of places I hadn't been to in a long while.
  3. I would have spent the night at a friend's house in Cambridge, but his flight is cancelled. I am stuck with a hotel room around Harvard Square.
Dec 27th
  1. My friend, who was going to be back on the 26th will now arrive today, the 27th, at 11:30pm if everything goes as planned. I have a flight at 7am the next morning. This essentially means I will need to get another hotel room.
  2. Having been around Boston with friends and on my own and having all my friends out of town, I decide to get myself a modicum of comfort and book a room at the only hotel right at the airport: a Hilton. The rest of the afternoon and evening is relaxing and I get a good night's sleep.
Dec 28th
  1. I arrive at Logan Airport 1.5 hours before my domestic flight and pick up my suitcase that I was supposed to have 6 days ago. Normally this is plenty of time, but the American Airlines check-in line takes over an hour to get through, and I get to the security checkpoint 15 minutes before my flight departs.
  2. I barely make it on the plane. I don't know it yet, but my luggage didn't make it.
  3. I arrive in San Francisco. My checked bags do not.

I usually enjoy the excitment of air travel since it means I'm usually about to embark on an adventure, but right now I'm quite glad I don't have airline travel ahead of me for a long, long time.