5,700 hundred miles later…

Wow.  The blissful days of motorcycle festivals seem like eons ago, when in reality it’s only been a couple of weeks.  Busy weeks.  Weeks that took me to San Francisco, Berkeley, Cleveland and the Minneapolis and Chicago airports, among other places.

There’s a lot I could say (good stuff) about my visit to San Francisco, but I think I’ll save that for when I’m less tired, and less delighted to be home alone on a Friday, because being home means I’m:

1.  Not sleeping in a hotel room
2.  Not having to put up with airports and cities full of supremely annoying strangers.

The bedbug scare has definitely lessened my love of hotel rooms.  Luckily, neither of the hotel rooms I patronized during my 8-flights-in-6-days adventure had them, but the thought is enough to make my skin crawl, literally.  As it’s doing right now.  Excuse me while I go bathe in alcohol or something.

Normally, I like the anonymity of hotel rooms.  But my San Francisco’ hotel experience was marred by one of my more neurotic traits; I can’t sleep when someone else is snoring in the room with me.  It’s not all snoring; the quiet snuffle now and then is no big deal.  But when it’s that heavy, saw-like snoring, I’m a goner.  I transition from a woman who could happily sleep for 9 hours a night into psycho-tossing-and-turning girl. This is a problem.  Not a terribly urgent one since I currently have my queen bed all to myself, but a disturbing one nonetheless.  What if the man I’m destined to marry (note the optimism) snores this way?  Will I drive him away?  Will I go broke on therapy?  These are the things I think about.  My travel companion was compassionate and scored us a second room for our second night, but starting a trip off with a night of no sleep wasn’t my best strategy.

Luckily, the hotel room in Cleveland (my third different location in as many nights) was quiet and huge.  But I think by that point exhaustion was setting in as pretty much anything people did drove me crazy. From the heavy breather sitting next to me in a meeting to the women walking down the sidewalk with their giant, space-hogging strollers, I had very little love for my fellow man.

(Except, of course, for the Chilean miners and their rescuers; if I could have, I would have happily watched all 39 men emerge from the earth.  And probably cried at every single one. What a story.)

On vacation this past summer I discovered that I’m missing the gene that should help me talk to strangers on airplanes; on this trip I discovered a gene that I definitely AM NOT missing. It’s the “I can’t find a walking rhythm in airports” gene.  I swear, put me in an airport and I will always, always find myself walking behind the woman who’s dragging 10 bags, 6 children, 3 cell phones and her wheelchair-bound grandma-in-law toward my gate.  Or, I’ll be walking as fast as I can on a moving sidewalk, and some 7 foot tall guy with legs up to here will politely clear his throat and ask me to step aside into the “standing” lane.  Or I’ll be strolling along in the crowd, finally, blissfully walking at just the right pace, when someone will abruptly decide they need to use the restroom, and I will have to do a little Riverdance-inspired jig to keep from mowing them down and/or falling on my face. 

Days like yesterday, when even scoring an exit row in one flight and a single seat in another couldn’t shake my grumps, make me realize how I could never, ever be a “full time” traveler.  Maybe, if I did it all the time, I could develop that hard shell that chronic travelers seem to have.  Or maybe I should be like the people who have never traveled before (there are so many! This amazes and humbles me), who have no clue that when you wear knee-high lace-up boots and metal studded belts, you will stop the entire security line, and who really, legitimately, don’t give a damn.

Instead, I’m stuck in a limbo world, cursed with an overdeveloped sense of self-awareness and a knack for choosing the wrong stall in the ladies restroom. 

God, it’s good to be home.

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