Well, I thought things were off to a good start. I had remembered all the usual important things: federal ID badge (a must when travelling for work), rubber fingers for flipping through page after countless page of the claims files, my phone, my sleepmask and ear plugs...I thought I had everything I would need to make my week-long work trip in Waco, Texas go without a hitch. But I had forgotten one thing.
I know what you're thinking. "Oh, what a tragedy," you say with your eyes rolling. "To be without your iPod for an entire week. How will you possibly survive? Might as well just go back home and give up since there is no way to function an entire week without an iPod." And it's true that an iPod is not really one of the basic necessities of life. Not like water, or clothing, or chocolate. But as soon as I realized I had forgotten it (it was still sitting in my living room inside the bag I had taken down to the gym), I started thinking of all the things I needed it for. Listening to podcasts at the airport and on the plane. Keeping my brain entertained while running on the treadmill. Cutting out the ambient noise when I spent 8 hours a day briefing cases in a windowless room at the Regional Office all week. And without my iPod, I was also missing the most important accessory: my headphones. All that careful planning to bring my netbook and an attachable DVD player...for naught. For one cannot watch movies on an airplane without headphones.
I responded by taking the action any thirty-something yuppie would--I posted about my problem on Facebook. Within a few minutes, my friend Moe had replied that at least I still had Pandora on my phone. And all of a sudden, my situation was not as hopeless as it seemed! I could still listen to Pandora (an internet radio station) and then I remembered that I had moved my workout mix over to my phone so I could listen to it while using the Couch to 5K app. Things were looking up! Add in a quick trip to the airport store where I procured a pair of purple headphones and we were back in business.
Except the headphones didn't work. Well, I should clarify. One of the ear buds worked, but from the other? Nada. I couldn't get the volume up loud on the netbook enough to make it audible out of the one ear bud, and OF COURSE the shows I was trying to watch didn't have captions. Which is really ridiculous when you consider that they were both British and you would think they would assume us yanks would have no idea what they were saying. Stephen Fry, I am most disappointed in you.
I also thought that perhaps there would be headphones available on the airplane, because it's an airplane, but nope. Apparently American Airlines doesn't bother to equip their flights from DC to Dallas with any kind of audio or video entertainment so that was a no go.
So here I am, at 25,000 feet, composing a blog post (in Microsoft Note Pad because my netbook doesn't have Word), trying to kill the remaining hour of time until we arrive in Dallas. Soon I'll go back to reading my bookclub book (The Help, which is actually quite good), but for now I will just keep typing in the hopes it will make the time go by faster. Look at that, 12 minutes gone by without me even trying.
This is going to be a long week. Also, I want my money back for these damn jacked up headphones...but I'm not really sure how to go around it. After all, I'm about 4 states away from the airport store by now. And I just learned that it's snowing in Texas. Snowing. IN TEXAS.