Sunday, 4 September 2011
Day 1: Larrington Towers - Denver, CO
This has not gone well. Trying to update the maps on my TwatNav has been an exercise in frustration, as Microsith decided to install an update which cut my desktop machine off from teh Intarwebs. Then one of its hard drives died. And I realised I'd neglected to bring a memory stick home from work, and also had neglected to set up the Out Of Office notification on my work e-mail. So my little furry chums who get in touch to ask for their reports to be re-printed, because they want then now as opposed to in four hours time when the Helldesk gets around to it, will think me some terrible kind of Rudesby. Leave TwatNav plugged into laptop while I barrel out to Harlow and sort myself out.
At least the TwatNav has finally updated when I get back. Finish packing - well, almost, as it now turns out I'm down two pairs of sunglasses and the lead to connect my iPod to the motor-car. Natch I do not realise this until it's way too late to do anything about it.
Ho for Heathrow! Check-in is relatively painless, and I go through security, buy duty-free and put myself outside a couple of pints of Stella. Then to gate B67 where, according to my boarding card, there will be a big shiny Boeing waiting to waft me to Denver.
There is a big shiny Boeing alright, but it is waiting to waft a raft of grumpy folks to Los Angeles. I do not want to go to Los Angeles. Not now and, frankly, not ever. I rush to block C. "We've been looking for you" says a severe BA lady, who directs me to the correct gate. I am the last to board. This is embarrassing.
Nine -odd hours later we reach Denver. I am starving, due to having slept through $MEAL, and the nasty chicken sandwich they served up towards the end of the flight is scant consolation. But I'm quickly through Immigration (where for once they don't give me the third degree), grab the Monster Bag, do Customs, run out of the terminal and spark up my first tab for more than twelve hours. Bliss!
Shuttle bus to the car hire place. While there, I have a full-one case of the shakes. Nice Man is understandably concerned that I am about to drive away in his expensive motor-car, so donates two bottles of water and an energy bar to The Cause. I creep out with trepidation to pick up the motor-car and get a result - it is a Mustang and not a Terrible Chrysler as I had hoped. And the TwatNav has woken from its torpor and realised that it is no longer in E17.
To the hotel. It is tall enough to stand up in and looks as though it will keep the rain off, but here is no restaurant. Dinner consists of Mr Thrifty's energy bar and a large whisky. Following this I go to bed and can't sleep. This is ridiculous. It gets worse when I'm obliged to throw up in a bin outside the building while having a fag. And the fridge, while not as persistent as the one in Laramie in 2008. is even louder when it's on. Almost time for breakfast, hitting the road and looking for iPod lead, sunglasses and a needle and thread with which to re-attach my just-came-orf-in-me-'and trouser button. Things, as Professor Cox said, can only get better...
There will be a new photo too. The Mustang is as black as the Earl of Hell's weskit.