I longed to write this week, but life intervened in a big way. A friendly acquaintance at work was canned on Monday. (No one, including him, could say he didn't see it coming, but I always get that "a comrade has fallen" feeling regardless.) My mom took a heart-stopping turn for the worse (Deena the hospice nurse on Tuesday: "I think she's shutting down" -- and she didn't mean emotionally), apparently temporary. On Wednesday my aunt Jerri died in Sioux Falls, which I learned about on Thursday, while I was walking the show floor at Macworld.
And so Thursday night I found myself spending hours slogging through Orbitz, Travelocity, Expedia and CheapTickets to sort out a trip revision: to change my JetBlue trip to Washington next week (scheduled over a month) to stop in Sioux Falls for Jerri's funeral next Tuesday. That was painful. The travel sites aren't very smart about showing various flight combinations -- instead you get a mile-long page with every variation, and you better pay attention to the one you want, after you memorize all the elements of your "multi-city" trip. Ick. So after a long, long time of squinting, running multiple browsers, and growing disgust at the ubiquitous bad UI, I settled on Orbitz for a $1200 ticket: SFO-Mpls-Sioux Falls-Mpls-Washington-Mpls-SFO.
It won't be fun for many reasons but it does seem like an adventure in the making (South Dakota? in January? ouch -- after 22 years, I really am a Californian now). I've not been to South Dakota for many years, and it seems right to remember Jerri in this way. She always asked when I could visit. I'm sorry that it took too long. She was a trouper, and I'll miss her very wry take on the world.
Next time I'll take up Smackworld...