Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Top Thirteen Things I Learned During my 36-hour Trip to Denver

This is a report on my ACFW conference experience last weekend. And, yes, the number 13 is significant.

What I learned on the way to the conference:

1. If you’ve had radiation treatments any time in the last three months, you may set off radiation detectors at the border that will delay everyone within a two mile radius while the officers try to discover which one of you is trying to smuggle uranium into the United States.

2. Never even hint to a border crossing officer that you might be missing your flight in Seattle. It only slows them down.

3. Twenty-year old Buicks can cruise along very nicely on the straight-away at 65 or 70 miles an hour if they have to, even though they might be burning up the gas faster.

4. Best Value is a good, cheap motel on International Boulevard that also offers shuttles to the airport 24-hours a day.

5. If you want to fly standby, you have to arrive at the airport two hours before the first flight (which goes out at 6:00 am) to give the airlines people time to figure out what you’re doing and arrange it.

6. All flights are always full, and everyone who has paid for their ticket shows up, often at the last minute just as your hopes for a successful stand-by ticket have risen to new heights. Everyone, that is, except people who have missed their flights the day before because of border delays.

7. Do not eat chili at any time during a 12-hour layover in any airport, even though it seems like a good idea at the time.

8. If you want to read or sleep during 12-hour layovers in airports, don’t strike up conversations with race car mechanics sitting next to you in the gate area. But if you would enjoy meeting interesting characters like Les, who has a daughter named Summer Breeze (named after the song) and a son named Talon, and if you would like to learn a whole lot of other interesting things on a 12-hour layover in the airport, go for it.

9. The reason you have to change the oil in your car often is because oil contains additives that keep your gaskets supple. The additives burn up after awhile, so you need to change the oil to get fresh ones.

10. If you’re smoking anything with your buddies around a campfire in an empty lot anywhere near the Seattle International Airport runway (or any airport runway, for that matter), and it occurs to one of you that it would be a good idea to add some old tires to your campfire, don’t. It scares the tower people when they see their planes descending through a cloud of black smoke.

11. If you haven’t played Sudoku in a long time, you’ve lost your edge and will have to learn to win it all over again.

12. Coffee should be consumed only when you want to stay awake for a long time after you drink it.

13. No obstacles in your writing journey will prevent God from doing what He wants to with your writing, and one ten-minute conversation with an editor can make the whole trip worthwhile, even if you arrive when the conference is half over.

1 comment:

Linda B said...

I like your 13 things. And I'm glad you made the effort to go to the conference because then I got to meet you.