Sunday, January 19, 2014

My Long Term Relationship With Delta...

"American" was typically my airline of choice when I was younger. I don't think I could even count the number of times I must have flown that carrier's cross country red-eye routes in my lifetime. (As you may remember, I lived in New York for many, many years once upon a lifetime ago, whilst all of my family still lived out west.)

But lately, or for at least the past 20 years or so, it's pretty much been "Delta." Except for that one time I flew to Atlanta to see an American Idol concert (the one with Carrie Underwood, Bo Bice and Constantine) which was "Midwest" I think... the airline that bakes and serves fresh baked chocolate chip cookies on board.

But as delicious as they were, my loyalty has pretty much recently been to Delta who, due to my Delta Amex and Frequent Flyer membership, provides me with regular free bag checking (which can add up to alot!) and (typically) a free flight every year or so.

On my latest flight, as I proceeded to go through security, the TSA agent stopped fairly short of yelling at me as I attempted to remove my shoes, coat, belt and display my bagged liquids, instructing me to just continue on through without doing any of that. Apparently Delta knows me well enough by now to realize I'm probably not a threat...

So anyway, the other day I was trying to figure out just how many times I've flown on this airline and to be honest these past many years have become such a blur in my mind that once again I honestly couldn't recall them all. So yesterday, thanks to my journals and blogs, I was able to sit down and finally figure it out.

*Please note that this only includes trips to see my family since my oldest daughter left for college. It DOES NOT include any of the countless flights I may have taken previously when I may have used the carrier, NOR does it include any of the Delta flights to my many, many Clay Aiken concerts (because well, that would just be embarrassing...)

September 2001 - To Rexburg to settle Whit at college (I have no pictures of this trip except for this one of the Quality Inn where I stayed!!)

Note of some importance: This was just one week prior to 9/11... making it the very last travel experience (or at least the way I once knew travel) that I'd ever have in my lifetime.

November 2001 - To Provo for Thanksgiving. Daryn flew out with me and Whitney travelled down from Idaho. We also celebrated Mom and David's Anniversary. 50 years of marriage!.. even if it only had been 25 to each other. :)

May 2002 - To San Jose and San Francisco to see Whitney's Contemporary Dance Theatre tour. I think I spent the majority of the time in my hotel room writing my final paper for English 101, except for this brief jaunt down to Fisherman's Wharf one very windy day.

April 2003 - To Rexburg for "Mother's Week" and to see Whitney's dance concert. This also began my long standing relationship with the Driftwood Motel in Idaho Falls.

April 2004 - To Salt Lake City to visit with family. Daryn flew out from Michigan with me and Whit took the shuttle down from BYUI. Clay and Kelly just happened to be there too...

February 2005 - A 7 day Royal Carribean Cruise with my sisters. The cruise was fabulous! The 4 day travel debacle getting to Miami and back, not so much! I'll really have to do a blog about THAT experience some day.

May 2005 - To Rexburg to visit the girls and to see a couple of performances. Mom and David visited too.

November 2005 - To Provo for Thanksgiving (the whole gang was there!)

May 2006 - To Rexburg for Whitney and Aaron's Graduation)

And then drove to Utah for their wedding.

November 2007 - To Driggs for Thanksgiving and baby Jade's blessing.

January 2008 - Hawaiian Cruise with Family.

May 2008 - To Idaho Falls for the MS Walk and a visit to the McKee's in Tetonia.

July 2008 - To Rexburg for Daryn and Jon's wedding.

April 2009 - To Idaho for the MS Walk and a visit with Norris's in Boise.

November 2009 - To Tetonia for a visit to see the McKee's new home, then on to Provo for Thanksgiving.

August 2010 - Family Reunion at Aspen Grove.

This was the year that our family photo was unfortunately damaged. At least we got a partial group shot.

November 2010 - To Boise to visit newborn baby Rachel. Whitney, Aaron and Jade came as well and we all stayed at the Shilo Inn.

March 2011 - To Tetonia to visit the newborn twins. Norris's drove through a snowstorm to get there too!

August 2011 - To Provo where we visited with Grandpa David for the last time.

September 2011 - To Provo for Papa's funeral.

November 2011 - To Teton Valley and then Provo for Thanksgiving.

April 2012 - To Provo for Whitney and Grandma's Birthdays...

and then on to Cali and Disneyland with the McKees.

August 2012 - To Boise for a "hot" time with the Norris's, then on to Tetonia to see McKee's (and back to Boise).

December 2012 - To Tetonia for newborn Lochlan's blessing. Grandma and Alison made the trip up for a very snowy weekend.

March 2013 - To Boise for a stay at the Norris's new home and to meet baby Shaylee. The McKee's, Grandma and Margie came to visit too.

May 2013 - Another family reunion at Aspen Grove and a couple of simply great family photos!

September 2013 - To Idaho for another MS Walk and lots of great family time!

And then most recently...

November 2013 - Thanksgiving in Boise with a visit from the McKees.

So let's just do the math for schnicks! I'm counting 29 trips in a little under 13 years at an average cost of $600 while estimating perhaps about 10 of them being free. So basically that's still around $12,000 give or take a few hundred that could have been used towards a nice little downpayment on a house out west. *sigh*

But then, who's counting?

Next trip? Vegas with my girls! Plane ticket has been purchased, hotel booked and itinerary is being planned as I type. After which I will add it to this list so that I can continue to keep "all things travel" straight.

Though there may not be any pictures.

Because you know what they say about Vegas...

Monday, January 13, 2014

Breaking Bad Habits...

Ok, I've really got to STOP this because I am now on my third time through.

I suppose it wouldn't be so bad if I hadn't just watched the first episode of the first season less than two months ago. Yes I was a very late bloomer.

But then I bloomed quickly.

I think the first time I ever heard about Breaking Bad was some time around the middle of September, when suddenly everybody and their dog was talking about it on FaceBook, anticipating the series finale, and talking about it ad nauseum. But still, I wasn't drawn in.

It wasn't until I was visiting my daughter in Idaho for Thanksgiving when I just happened to notice this image in the "Recently Watched" section of her Netflix streamed programs.

Me: I've heard alot about that show.
Daughter: You mean you've never watched it?
Me: Nope, guess I just never had the time.
Daughter: Well just sit back and relax...

So I watched the first episode...

... and then I watched another, and another.

The next morning set my alarm for crack of dawn in order to sneak downstairs to watch episodes four, five and six. That first morning, my three year old granddaughter scooted down the stairs still rubbing her eyes, snuggled up with me and after a couple of seconds asked...

"Wha's he doing???.."


SO from then on I only managed to sneak in maybe one episode in the morning... or at least as many as I could before the pitter patter of little feet appeared on the stairs.

By the time I left Idaho I was feeling like a complete junkie. In fact I don't think I'd felt so out of control since those early days of Clay Aiken!

The Minneapolis airport now has complimentary iPads at every seat in the waiting areas... and though I've never used an iPad I still managed enough savviness to log into my Netflix account and change my DVD preferences from ONE DVD AT A TIME to THREE... and to also load up my cue with the remaining 42 episodes!

That was 6 weeks ago...

Since then I have memorized the titles and can pretty much ramble off the main synopses of each and every episode. (And yes, that IS the correct plural form of synopsis.)

And I can ace these Ultimate Fan Game Trivia Quizes like a champ!

I've even taken to reading Comic Books!

Did I mention I'm on my third journey???

Though with all seriousness, after this, I know it'll finally be time to move on. :(

But what an absolutely amazing and brilliant show and what a fun experience it's been! Thankyou, thankyou, thankyou to Vince Gilligan, Bryan Cranston, Aaron Paul, Anna Gunn, Dean Norris, Betsy Brandt, RJ Mitte, Jonathan Banks, Bob Odenkirk, Giancarlo Esposito, Jesse Plemons, Steven Michael Quezada, Christopher Cousins and Laura Fraser! (I know what you're thinking... if I were THAT much of a devoted fan I would have taken their names and capitalized and highlighted all of the elements of the Periodic Table!)


I just love all these people so much!

Coincidentally, this photo was taken after last year's Emmy Awards by an old A Chorus Line peer who is now a celebrity photographer for CBS. Kismet?

And this year they did it again at the Golden Globes!

For the last time. :(

And so anyway... Goodbye Breaking Bad!

Here's to you!

It's been AN ABSOLUTE TRIP and I will surely miss you!

It's just so hard to say goodbye.

But I guess if you can do it, I can do it...