Friday, September 25, 2009

Heading West

I'm at the airport waiting for my flight to leave for Dallas (and then on to California). From what I understand, getting here in itself was a pretty good accomplishment with the 'rolling closures' of the Parkway West with all the International Leaders leaving the G20 Summit. I could see state trooper cars at each on & off ramp ready to shut things down when people came through.My flight was originally scheduled for 5:00, now it's backed up to 5:50. I had a 2.5 hour layover in Dallas, so I'm not too worried yet. But, another hour delay and I'll be worried. I'll have to update this with any major changes. Just for the record, Beth and I scheduled our flights back in June. The G20 wasn't announced until July. President Obama should have checked with Beth and I and the BOUS race before setting up the meetings here it Pittsburgh!

She's competing in the Best of the US race where one male and female from each state compete. It's a fun head-to-head competition that goes across all age groups. We did our normal routine for this trip and it goes something like this:

*I drop off the dog the day before (except this time it was Wednesday because I was at a College Fair)
*We pack the bags and bikes the night before
*Drop off Beth at the airport before school (school's about 20 min away)
*I go to school and teach while Beth's at the race location getting organized and putting the bike together
*Leave after school back for the airport and fly out (usually with grading or a book to kill the time)
*Beth comes to the airport and picks me up

These California ones are a little bit trickier in that I'm arriving at 10:30pm California time (which is 1:30am!!). This is especially long since we got up at 4am to get out to the airport for Beth's flight. I hope Beth and her mom don't fall asleep and forget about me! I'm looking forward to this race as Beth competed in it last year. I was really impressed with how the put it on and the pre-race meeting and how state-oriented it was. It gave you pride in Pennsylvania. Beth's PA teammate is pretty good so hopefully the equal or better the #3 state finish from last year.

Back on Wednesday, I dropped the dog off a day early because I was helping out at a college fair representing Elizabethtown College. With it being a smaller school (1900 students) they recruit alumni to serve as representatives at fairs to get more reach at more places. I really enjoy it. It's an easy sales pitch for me. I always tell the people there that I liked it so much, I convinced my sister to go there also and follow me in engineering.

My pitch line to the people who wander around is "Have you heard of Elizabethtown College?" And if they haven't, I follow-up with, "Have you been to HersheyPark? It's 10 minutes down the road and we loved going up for visits on the weekend for chocolate!!!" Then I go on about the great programs, the small class sizes, and the personal touch of the small school.

Well, that's about it. I heard the people at the airline desk say the airplane should be here at 5:30, so we should be out of here around 6pm. I'll try to sneak in a turn or two on Facebook Scrabble. See you in California!

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