Los Altos, California

I had checked AlaskaAir.com, though in hindsight I’m not sure it would have made a difference. The site said everything was a-okay and on time. After deftly avoiding a massive traffic jam on I-205 that backed up almost onto I-5, we were in a self-congratulatory mood as we drove to the airport. Then, after curbside drop off, as I typed the confirmation code into the Alaska Airline kiosk, our mood and our luck both changed. “Flight cancelled.” Oh good.

So they routed us onto Horizon Air up to Seattle where, after a brief layover, we boarded an Alaska flight directly to San Jose. As compensation for our pains, we got two $25 off coupons for our next flight, two 5 minute phone cards (which we used up calling the Lillys) and $10 in meal vouchers (which we used in the airport). Both flights were happily less than full so we were able to place Jonah in his car seat and kick back a bit.

Jonah was wide-eyed and slack-jawed with awe on takeoff, but soon fell asleep for the duration of the flight to Seattle. The second flight to San Jose, he stayed amazed pretty much the whole way. (We’re not there yet, so his mood could change; I’m typing this on the plane.) UPDATE: We’ve broken out the new binky to keep his squeals from annoying other passengers. Binky in, he’s doing fine.

While waiting at PDX, I spoke with a fellow traveller who is president of a company that makes spinal implants designed for people who have herniated discs and the like. His product is an alternative to spinal fusion surgery, and he claims that within 3-4 years modern medicine as it relates to back treatment will be completely revolutionized by his company’s products. I am sorry to say that quick boarding for our flight prevented me from getting either his or his company’s name. Thought it was fascinating nonetheless.

In SeaTac, I tried to hop on the wireless network only to find that it costs $6.95. Unbelievable. Everything a revenue stream. (Indeed, apparently Starbuck’s coffee locations now charge for their wireless access too.) You can get airport and some airline information for free. Everything else will cost you. Which, as you can imagine, I think is chintzy as all get out.

I did a little Mac evangelist work in talking with a PC-toting business traveller. Maybe convinced him to switch his wife’s machine from PC to Mac, but odds are good that he was just shining me on. Affable fellow either way.

As a final note, hurrah for Apple technology. Mystic, the PowerBook G4, has functioned flawlessly, and I even put the illuminated keyboard to use. (Sort of. Since I can touch type, it’s only the function keys I need to stare at to see what’s what.) The 15″ screen fits nicely in the extended tray table with the screen at a comfortable viewing angle. The 12″ would also work handily; the 17″ would likely have problems fitting.