An Exciting Travel Day

Well, it was a more exciting travel day than I’d anticipated — I was almost all the way to O’Hare this morning when I suddenly realized I didn’t remember putting my wallet in my bag. Dammit! Sure enough, it wasn’t there.

I was tight on time, but I thought I could manage to go all the way back home (20-25 minute drive) and back to O’Hare again in time, if I talked my Lyft driver into letting me add on the extra stops. She was amenable, and in the end I made my flight, but with just a few minutes to spare. Whew!

After that, it was straightforward enough — I normally work on the plane, but I was tired, so I played Don’t Starve instead, which was sort of funny — the flight attendant who gave me my tea ended the interaction by telling me not to starve as he walked away. 🙂 And then at the end of the flight, when I took my headphones out, the two teenage boys seated in my row asked what I was playing, and when I told them, they commented, impressed, that I could play it offline!

Yes, children. There are LOTS of video games you can play offline. We are failing you if you don’t know that!

Don’t Starve does also have a networked version, Don’t Starve Together, but the solo game is a perfectly good game, and very nice for making a plane flight go very fast when you’re tired and unable to concentrate on work.

After that, it was arriving at Newark (which was totally the wrong airport for me to fly into, but I hadn’t realized where the conference would be when I was booking my flight, which is on me), taking the shuttle to the train, and the train to NY Penn Station, and then I could’ve spent another hour on public transit, but instead I switched to an Uber because I was really hoping to make it to the convention in time to catch Gowri’s poetry reading, along with the other resistance performers in the 2-4 time slot.

I got there at 3, and luckily, that was JUST before she went on. (I was sorry to miss Meena Kandasamy’s Zoom reading, but hopefully I’ll catch her another time.) More on Gowri’s reading soon.

Then I wandered around the dining / booth area for a bit, ate some snacks which I cannot name for you, but my favorite was the very soft savory doughnut-y thing, in the bowl with the fried pepper thing, and the thin dark lentil thing. If someone can name the soft doughnut-y thing for me, that’d be great, so I know to order it again. Sorry I am failing to describe it better, but my wording is going. Oh, I am tired. The mango lassi was also delicious.

Went to the hotel around 5 and basically let out of a whoop of relief and crashed into the nice big bed for two hours, watched a few more episodes of Stranger Things. Then I rousted myself out of bed for a desperately needed shower (it was very hot and sweaty traveling today, and lugging a suitcase and a backpack didn’t help), and have now put on clean clothes (including a lovely block-printed wrap I bought in Sri Lanka), and come down to the perfectly adequate Marriott bistro for some perfectly adequate pizza.

Is it the best pizza Queens has to offer? No. Could I have found a plethora of better food options within a mile of the Courtyard Marriott? Yes — I did do some foodie research. Maybe for dinner tomorrow. Today, this only required going downstairs, which was as much as I could manage.

Tentative plan for the rest of the evening is to stay down here and write a bit, if I can manage it — at least write something about being a pioneer (?) for me to read out when I accept the award tomorrow (and no, Mary Anne, they aren’t expecting a 30-minute speech from you, so think about what you can fit into 3-5 sentences max, okay?) —

— and whenever I tire out, go back up to the room and watch more TV until I fall asleep. No children to manage, no other obligations, just resting in a hotel room. I LOVE hotel rooms, especially ones I don’t have to share with anyone else. They are the best.

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