Sleeping at Home
We slept in.
Midnight to 10 a.m. was good sleep. Earl and I got up about than, and traded off the shower, and while I was in the shower Earl called Carl and Gretchen to coordinate the getaway. My flight wasn't until 4:30, and there had been some talk of my driving out to Gretchen's today, but by the time we actually got checked out, loaded up, and off to breakfast getting all the way out to Santa Cruz and back to Oakland before 3:30 didn't look good.
Checking out was a little bit more elaborate than I had hoped. Most other years the hotel had been very good about splitting the bill between the people that were staying in the room. This time, while they had both credit cards on the record, they charged everything to mine. Luckily, with most of the rooms already taking care of correctly, the front desk wasn't particularly busy and Earl and I were able to get our separate checks easily. I then left my bags with the front desk while Earl went to put his bags in his car. I wandered through the convention one last time and got accosted by three different men, one of whom asked me if I played AD&D and when I said I didn't he asked me if I wanted to learn. I told him the last time I played that system I was in high school, and had no desire to re-learn the new system, which actually might be a lie as Bob's son Andrew is learning AD&D and is fascinated, which might mean that I might learn that system to run things for him when he moves here. Anyway, I didn't have the time, so mostly said that I was leaving soon so couldn't join any games. Eventually, I found everyone else again, and soon had an entire bench filled with luggage to guard as Carl and Gretchen brought their cars to the front door.
A young man sitting there with a chest filled with miniatures open a conversation with me, and we talked a while before he said that the van from the airport should be arriving soon. I had to laugh at that point, and a moment later Carl's 540i and Gretchen's Porsche arrived. I loaded all the luggage into the trunk of the 540i and then hopped into the Porsche and waved merrily at the young man whose jaw had dropped. Carl and Earl knew where the restaurant was so Gretchen was free to drive the way she wanted to to get there. It was just a 944, but it was light enough that it could go a good clip once it had its momentum up and moving. It was a wonderful car in the sunlight, and we had fun talking and laughing on the way over.
The waffle place served wonderful food, as usual, and, as usual, we ordered way too much food because it all looked so good. I had my usual hash and eggs and half a plain waffle, which past experience has shown me to be about my limit. Gretchen, however, had also ordered an entire order of biscuits and gravy and I couldn't resist temptation, especially since she couldn't eat all of it or even half of it. I stole half a biscuit with plenty of creamy gravy. Coffee and juice helped wash everything down.
Earl left from the restaurant, as he had to be back in L.A. and there was some threat of snow on the Grapevine. Better to be in those mountain passes in the daylight, if he could. Carl, Gretchen, and I all went to Carl's apartment. We went inside, sat down on the couch, and promptly fell asleep. I think we're getting old. I set the alarm on my pocket watch before actually letting myself sleep. As usual, once I've set the alarm, I woke up about five minutes before it went off and we got ourselves sleepily together to get me to the airport.
They dropped me off at the United area, and it was very nice to know that I could, worst case, call Carl with my celphone if something did happen to my flight. It's good to have security.
The flight back was entirely uneventful, though I did call John at the airport when it looked like the flight was going to be leaving on time. A good thing, too, because the original information that I'd given him hadn't included the correct flight number. So I was able to give it to him. That was good. So he was there to meet me. Yay! I checked the bag coming home, and it took us a good half an hour to get it as they sent us to the wrong carosel to start. Yuck.
Home felt marvelous. Lots of Fezzik hugs and John hugs and meandering about unpacking and finding food and then I was able to just go to sleep and sleep deep and comfortable in my very own bed. Zzzzzzz....