Dec
10
All Quiet on the Western Front

Let me tell you something, you want to hear a pin drop in an airport? Just yell out "Breach!" near the metal detectors and see what happens. I had just gone through security when that happened, and in about 10 seconds the place was so quiet you could hear the scared heartbeats of the people around you.

After a few seconds of silence, a TSA employee walked out and said, "Ladies and gentlemen, welcome to Atlanta Hartsfield Airport. You have just participated in a security drill. Have a great day."

Unfortunately, the TSA had just unnecessarily confiscated my tiny vials of Refresh Tears® because the employees at the X-ray machine weren’t familiar with TSA’s rules, so I couldn’t go on to have a great day. I did have a pretty good one, though. The worst thing that happened after security was that my laptop battery went from 94% and 2 hours, 42 minutes to 3% and 0 hours, 5 minutes in just over an hour, which means I got to see only 2/3 of The Usual Suspects. I spent the rest of the flight listening to my jukebox while I alternately snoozed and worked on the crossword puzzle.

Even with the notorious Winter headwinds, we got in to ABQ 45 minutes early. It took about an hour to get my bags and the rental car, and then another hour to get to the base (which is connected to the airport but of course you have to go around the outside to get to the gate) and get checked in to billeting. I was dreading having to lug my laptop to the lobby every day for the internet, but it turns out I can just barely get a connection in my room. Yay!

I was really in the mood for Anthony’s Pizza at the BX, but I walked in at 1557 and all the restaurants were shutting down. I saw the schedule which listed a 1700 closing time on Sundays but then someone pointed out a new sign that they had all decided to close at 1600 today. It was just my luck that the base has a McDonald’s right across from the BX. I’m starting to get a cold and really didn’t want to drive around town looking for food, so I got a burger and headed back to the room to finish TUS and chat with e before she fell asleep on me.