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Trip to Texas part 2 
14th-Jul-2007 11:31 pm

Oh yeah -- now I remember what I'd meant to say last time around! One of the things I noticed just before leaving the house was that my phone only had 3 (battery) bars -- so I resolved to charge it up on the way to the airport. I actually did remember to plug it in when I got into the car. What I forgot to do was to check that the other end was plugged in fully enough. I realized when I got in, didn't see my friend E., and went to call to wonder where she was that it still only had 3 bars. Oops. So the phone has been off most of the trip. Anyhow, she hadn't quite left work yet, and then the traffic was difficult, but I sat inside the air conditioned terminal reading my book until she rang back that she was close, and then I went out to meet her.

One of the things I noticed was that the unleaded gas price was so much less here vs. Michigan (2.839 vs. 3.399) but that the diesel price (2.849) was about the same in both places.

Last time I was hear in early May 2005 we wanted to go to a Mexican restaurant, but for "some" reason (cinco de mayo) there was a several hour wait. But this time they weren't busy -- and I ate about 3 times what I should have at the buffet. Then went back to the house, changed, and went out to the theater to see the presentation I was down here for: E. had written a play and the community theater in her area was presenting it. They did a pretty good job, and I enjoyed it. Afterward, several of us went to Chili's -- for Margaritas mostly. I think I've not been to a Chili's since they had a hand in breaking a tooth back in 2004 (they paid for the crown). I figured I really didn't need to drink, and was really too full to eat, so I just ordered a milk shake. Wasn't great, but I finished it. And helped the others with their nachos. And then realized that I really REALLY shouldn't have done that. E. offered me a drug -- don't remember either the brand name nor the generic -- but after a short while of additional rebellion, my system settled, and I had no further problems.

I woke up and did a potty run at about 6am. Since there's a computer in the same room as the (very comfy) couch I'm sleeping on, I bopped into e-mail. While I was reading e-mail, E's 13 year old son came down and I guess he wanted to talk. I'd mentioned that I was planning on going back to bed, so I found him there when I closed down. We talked about his sunburn, and my understanding of the physics of what he should or shouldn't do, including why he shouldn't scrape it off with a knife... He wandered off at some point and I went back to couch until the house awoke around me.

Got up, showered, dressed, and went to Denny's with E. and her other friend. Had been planning on the IHOP, but the line there went out the door. I only got 2 french toasts (rather than the 3 on the menu) but I got both bacon and sausage rather than a choice, so I guess it all evens out.

E. went shopping for gifts for the cast & crew, and I tagged along. There was a store in the mall I wanted to stick my nose in on -- so I accomplished that.

One store we went into was Spencer's. It was less cheap-gifty than I expected and more sexual innuendo head shop. But I saw something that I just couldn't resist -- it combined 2 of my obsessions and only cost $3.99 (plus 8% tax!) -- a "Rubik" style cube with sudoku numbers on it.

The rest of Saturday
The day went by quite quickly, and suddenly it was time to get food. We ran out to Schlotzky's Deli. We used to have one in Ann Arbor, and its departure saddened me. The woman who was ringing me up "didn't do anything" but the cash register was weird. We scanned my card, an it wanted to know a name. Huh? Then we looked at the receipt and it had given me a 20% (employee) discount. Oh. She'd been asking how to do that, and it must not have cleared. They called someone over and I offered to pay the "discount" amount, but he smiled and said "keep it". Barely time to shove food in our faces, shower, change, and then it was time to go pick up all of the cast & crew girls (friends of E's daughter) who were working lights, etc. and book to the theater. Bustle, bustle. We'd gone over planning to work the counter, but they had sufficient volunteers, so I paid my entrance (again -- and was happy to do so) and went in. At the end of the show I was quite pleased that the director called E. up to the stage. SO very cool.

I'd been told that I was invited to the cast party which would be held at the same place the show was put on, but suddenly all that changed. E. was overruled, and everyone else was planning to go to a karaoke bar. This meant that the disappointed girls were all driven home (as they are highschoolers and couldn't get into a bar). I was, um..., somewhat (greatly) taken aback myself. If you'd asked me yesterday if I'd ever go into a karaoke bar, I'd have shuddered, and if I'd not said "no" I'd have said "gosh, I hope not". But I'm here to spend time with E. so I braced myself, wondered how bad it could really be, and didn't say anything.

Luckily the girls were thinking more clearly than I, and one of them said something about smoke. Oh. Right. I asked E. how bad it likely was going to be, and she started counting off the cast members who smoke, and admitted that it probably really would be quite bad. So I helped her unload the car and she left for the bar, and I started typing here.

So that brings us up to current time. It's nearly midnight here, and I don't know how many hours it'll be before E. gets home. I'm tired, but torn between crashing and waiting up.

My flight out tomorrow is 3-something, so we should all be awake in sufficient time to get me there. I come home not via DFW, but via O'Hare, and it'll be bloody late when we land.
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