Crow County, Alabama, 4:00 AM
Hmm…let's check, what did I forget…ah right, my plane tickets and passport. I don't know why I have one or when I got my passport, but it sure could come in handy now. Let's see…ID card, drivers license, bank cards, credit cards, $1000 in cash, etc. Yep, I have them all.
Ahh, an old yellow Ford Aerostar is pulling in nearby the sidewalk. I'll assume that creaky old van is the taxi due to location, but it sure didn't look like one. Upon closer inspection in the light, parts of the wheelwells have rusted away, the word "TAXI" seems like to be several stickers poorly applied with the letter A tipping to the right, the phone number and website seems to be poorly painted on with some kind of white house paint, and the Ford badge on the front is gone. What you get for living in a backwards town, I guess.
A old man came up and rang my doorbell, talking in a soft, friendly tone. "Is this the residence of the Hendricks?" I answered, "Um, yes. I called for a cab." The old man answered, "Ah…so it's just you, sonny? I see you have 4 bags there…ah." The old man carried the bags into the rear of the rusty van, one by one. To be honest, I think he got back problems from carrying all that crap. Eh, I'll add some more cash to the tip, no problem.
And finally, all the bags were on the van and I walked towards it. I pulled on the door, which was kinda hard to pull open after probably years of plastic and metal decay. When I entered the cab, I felt that thing was going to collapse me at any minute, like, oh I don't know, the frame suddenly breaking due to years of rust and leaving me stranded on the highway. The old man then entered the van, and asked me, "Airport, right?"
I answered, "Yes, sir." At least he's nice anyways. This van really needs a replacement, though.
The one good thing about this town compared to other middle of nowhere towns is that there is an small airport nearby known as Shelby Metropolitan Airport. Well, ok, it was pretty much built here because of passengers from larger communities and because this place is in the middle of nowhere, they could easily displace the noise from another more populated town all the way to here. And trust me, the sounds of regional jets taking off and landing does not sound pleasant when you are hearing them up close while asleep.
The old Aerostar's engine groaned, creaked and struggled out of the half-ass paved road, and the van finally started to gain speed. The handling and suspension is absurd, however since there aren't many curves here anyways, it doesn't matter much. However, once it got on the expressway, the van finally started to scream down the highway, passing every old Ford and Chevy truck beside it (and maybe the occasional actual car that sneaked here from another town or even another state. This is the loneliest highway in Alabama next to the loneliest town in Alabama. Everyone else in this state laughs at us and you if you somehow decided to take a trip here, which unless you have relatives, I don't see why you would bother. Just a thought.)
The old man at the seat looked at the side mirror, and then turned around and asked me, "So, where you headed, sonny?"
"Piedmont," I answered. "Also known as the Beachside City. Moving there permanently, most likely. "
"Ah, Piedmont. I would love to visit that city and see the beautiful California beachside. You have a job there?"
"If you mean if I got one there, then erm, yes…"
After 30 minutes of redundant questions that would be more at place in a retirement home or a BBQ, we finally arrived at the airport. The driver went out to where the luggage carts were held, then pulled two of them over to the trunk of the Aerostar and loaded up the 4 (with 3 rather large) bags onto them rather rusted carts. Then he told me, "$50, please." I sighed and paid him $70 ($20 was for tips.) The Aerostar pulled away, and I pushed the damn carts with all my energy.
I arrived at the elevator and pressed the "Up" button. The elevator creaked all the way to the main terminal. Then I decided to push the cart to the check-in desks. Let's see…Oceanic, AirCal, JetOne, RyanExpress…ok, Pacific Southwest. I pushed my cart over to the counter, only to find that the (no older than 25 years old) girl there was asleep. Um…how bad are the conditions here again?
I tapped her shoulder, and whispered…"Umm…excuse me."
The girl suddenly woke up. "Wh-HUH? HUH? OH SORRY SIR, I MUST BEEN ASLEEP! Heehee…"
I answered with a chuckle, "Uh…yeah…"
I couldn't take my eyes off the girl. She was just so cute! From her shiny blue eyes to her shiny yellow hair, from that cute little uniform, from her voice…holy crap, I was in heaven for a moment. Call me a pervert, but if you were around her, you would understand. She was just so…kawaii, if that's the correct term to describe it. Oh my, those breasts…
The girl suddenly spoke. "Um, sir?"
"Umm…nothing…heehee…sorry…I was thinking of something for a moment. Anyways," I replied, "Pacific Southwest Airlines Flight 885 to Piedmont, one-way. " I handed the online ticket over and the girl looked at it and then typed in the information.
"How many bags are you checking in, sir?"
"Can I see your ID or your passport, please?"
I just took out my passport and showed it to her.
"All right, one of the bags is a little overweight."
"I'll pay for it." I took out 10 bucks and gave it to her. She then confirmed the details. "Pacific Southwest Airlines Flight 885, Shelby-Piedmont, Airbus A318."
"All right, sir. Gate 9A at the east end of the terminal. Security's over in that direction. Thank you for flying PSA!"
I thought "Public Service Announcement" at first for some reason, but then I saw the giant "Fly " signs. I decided to go to the bathroom where I found out someone has happily taken a dump in the urinal, which didn't really surprise me. I went through the security check in a breeze, though that was probably because the security people were also half-asleep. Oh well.
I decided to go look at some magazines at the little gift shop beside the gate. Apparently I must have read all the good magazines already, since there isn't one single thing that interested me that I haven't read. To give you an idea, I only read 6 magazines this month. The shelf was full of garbage. Let's see…Lada And Yugo Daily, Beemernews , Mustangs and 90's Fords, Camry and Supra: The Ultimate Toyota Magazine, Civic Tuning,Camaro and Vette…fuck this, I'm going to get something from the entertainment and gaming section. I just decided to pick up the latest issue of Newtype and a chicken sandwich for breakfast, paid the drunk man eating a burger at the counter and left.
Man, can this get any worse?
"Attention all passengers. Pacific Southwest Airlines Flight 885 will be delayed until 9:15 AM. Attention all passengers. Pacific Southwest Airlines Flight 885 will be delayed until 9:15 AM. Thank you for your cooperation."
…I should probably call Kenny now. Sigh.