Almost Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil


Paula’s Post #….Whatever-the-heck-we’re-up-to-already.

My posts are always due on Tuesday.

Usually I post first thing in the morning, so I tend to write my posts Monday night  and push ‘publish’ the next morning. Except this early Tuesday morning I was already up and gone before it was even ‘early’.

4:00am – Alarm Clock

5:11am- Give jerky treat to poor confused Poodle before abandoning him to petsitter again. Haul suitcases off to car and drive to airport.

5:50am – Check in with US Airways and pay single checked bag baggage fees you never have to pay on Westjet and start snaking through incredibly long, sequester created, TSA security checkpoint at the usually serene Palm Springs Airport.

6:25am- Stop for a well-deserved Venti latte and blueberry muffin at the ever so welcome Starbucks immediately behind the airport security checkpoint, only to hear the PA announcement informing us that our 6:59 flight had now ‘fully-boarded’ and that departure was imminent.

Well, not quite fully boarded since we weren’t on board.

6:26am – 900 hundred yard race-walk from Starbucks to airport’s furthest departure gate, completed without incident on my part but marred by a little ‘spillfest’  involving my husband’s Pike Place Tall and his pale pink and white striped Ralph Lauren seersucker sport shirt . The one with the little green polo pony on it that will now never be the same again.

7:03 – 43 minute flight from PSP to PHX. Execute three thousand yard dash from one end of the terminal to another, utilizing – count ’em – no less than eight, high speed moving walkways. Arrive at gate just as flight is boarding for MCO.

8:33 – board flight for MCO and sit in plane for 15 minutes, 50 feet from departure gate while pilots who boarded plane half an hour early then pull away from gate and then remember they forgot to pick up important paperwork they need on board before takeoff.

MCO = Orlando!

4:15 Arrive MCO and pick up luggage-that-did-not-get-lost and find Hertz Gold car service. Find car and realize that despite paying for the smallest, cheapest car in the fleet knowing the near certainty of upgrade… no upgrade…. and that we had in fact been assigned the smallest, cheapest car in the fleet. The smallest American car ever made? A  Chevy ‘Spark’. (Note: it looks twice the size it really is in this picture)

Chevy Spark in 'Salsa'

4:54 Stuff husband into driver’s side of Chevy Spark and close eyes while husband rolls down the Florida turnpike trying to adjust all the exterior mirrors and figure out how the radio turns on and off and the air-conditioning works. Stop at two different toll booths in the space of 4 miles (whose idea was that) and continue rolling towards “exit 2”  following MapQuest directions from MCO to hotel so cleverly printed off and sent to iPhone the day before.

5:21- Get lost anyway.

5:33pm Haul out iPhone and use Google Maps to re-calculate route. Find monolithic conference hotel and deposit America’s smallest car with parking valet.

RosenShingle Creek

6: 03pm  Check in and happily be allotted gorgeous, 13th floor room with panoramic view of three resort pools and golf course.

6:11pm Discover dream room marred only by the fact that said room reeked of either a glue factory, a meth lab and the vomitus left in the wake of a weekend bachelorette party.

6:12pm Ride back down13 floors to lobby to get assigned a new room.

6:22pm Ride back up elevator and discover new 12th floor room is even bigger and nicer except for the full on view of the air-conditioning ducts atop the two acre roof covering the hotel’s convention center.

6:23 pm Fret.

6:33pm Sit in second unsatisfactory room and watch helplessly as technologically impaired husband discovers he has work deadline. Watch subsequent melt down over the fact that he cannot complete an important filing on the tiny screen of his iPad. A  filing that absolutely, positively must be done that day.

6: 38pm Remind husband who still hasn’t completed important filing that it is now 3:38 in the afternoon in Vancouver and that  bank closes in 22 minutes. Fret as husband ignores me because he is still is fretting over his tiny iPhone screen and the aforesaid deadline for important filing. Give up and go back down to lobby to get key for third new room, Return and remind husband what he already knows:  14 minutes left to transfer funds to pay Canadian income tax t due April 30th. Today.

6: 46pm Watch helplessly for 15 minutes as technologically challenged husband endlessly attempts to negotiate online banking website on his now-internet-connected-iPad before giving up and calling bank manager to make the transfer.

7:03pm Leave voice mail message for bank manager.

7:09pm Do happy dance when bank manager calls back and makes evil tax problem go away.

7:11pm Sigh with relief knowing I’m not going to be penalized a zillion dollars for not making tax payment before deadline. Gather up luggage and roll on over to door nuber three.

7:45pm Eat outrageously expensive dinner at hotel’s steakhouse and unwittingly order three different types of potato side dishes. Eat all three anyway.

9:35 Chat with interesting Moroccan waiter for half an hour.

9:45 Return to room number three, brush teeth and get in bed. Watch evening news and weather and learn about huge torrential rain storm that will drench all of Orlando over the next four days. Fret.

10:38 Remember I forgot to do Tuesday’s blog post. Any blog post.

10:43 Realize I still have time to do short blog post before I turn into a pumpkin.

10:44 Write blog post. Realize that despite crazy day that I’ve described, I can actually report that I edited more pages of my manuscript on the plane today then I’ve managed over the last three weeks. I’m past 200 pages now. For me, always an odd experience to go back over what I wrote months ago and sort out the good, the bad and the ugly.

Some of it, I love. Some of it, not so much, but if it just keeps raining on my Florida vacation parade, I think I can finish cleaning up my manuscript in the next week.

Bring it rain. I‘m ready for you.

So long Disney World.

Hasta la Vista Universal Studios,

Sayonara Epcot.

Come hell or high water, my edits will get done!

10:59 smugly punch the ‘Publish’ button, one minute before midnight on the West Coast.

11:08 punch self in forehead when weary mind registers that if it is actually only 10:59pm in Orlando, it is only 8:59 pm in my usual ‘posting’ time zone on the West Coast.

I made it!

11:10pm – Yawn. Start editing half-assed blog post and idly wonder whether this incorrigible ‘Tigger’ might get enough done to steal away for awhile and actually find time to meet Tigger.



4 thoughts on “Almost Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil

  1. “always an odd experience to go back over what I wrote months ago and sort out the good, the bad and the ugly.”

    Glad to know someone else edits better after leaving the work for a while. Gives me objectivity and distance.

  2. Pingback: Writing on the Road | 5 Writers 5 Novels 5 Months

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