The flights from Chico to SF and from SF to Boise weren't bad. Boise was COLD, but I'd come prepared with my jacket. My company had arranged for us to rent a minivan. Which was pimpin. Obvio.
We got to the Idaho offices, a place that I'd never been. I got to meet all of the people with whom I've spoken on the phone throughout the past three months, and we were fed. And there were cream puffs. And punch. And Christmas prezzies. And bonuses. And hours and hours of presentations about the company and new developments etc., etc., but that was interesting to me, and therefore just fine.
I must now move into the present tense, because I keep reliving the horror behind my eyelids.
It is snowing. 5ish rolls around, and everyone living in/staying in Idaho is readying to leave. Three of us four that came clamber back into our minivan. We get to the airport. We go to check in. Our flight to San Francisco has been canceled because of fog (there, naturally).
"Where can you get us?"
"Well there's a later flight to San Francisco, but it's full. I can get you to LA."
"Can you get us to Sacramento? Sacramento would be okay."
"Yes, I can put you all on a flight to LAX, and then fly from LA to Sacramento, putting you there at 1152pm."
We call Big Bossman, and he tells us to do whatever it takes to get home. Since we've all been up since the night before, this includes cocktails. Our flight to LA is delayed. I call a rental car company to make a reservation in Sacramento so we can get back to Chico. They close at midnight.
We fly to LA. At this point I'm pretty delirious. And when, instead of a single gin and tonic, I get a double vodka tonic, my delirium gets a touch worse. Our flight to Sac is on time. But wait. We have to wait for some passengers who just got in and need to make their connecting flight, pushing our estimated arrival time back to 12:05am. What time does that rental car company close ladies and gentlemen? That's right, midnight. Fantastic.
We fly to Sacramento. As soon as the wheels of the airplane touch the runway, I call the rental car people. Please. Please don't close. They tell me they won't leave until they rent me my car. We get off the airplane. We follow the signs, go down the escalator. Where are we? Seriously, where ARE we? We've all been to the Sacramento Airport, none of us has ever seen this. WHERE are we? Where is the parking garage? Where is the rental car area? Where is the baggage claim? WHERE ARE WE????
Anyone who knew that the Sacramento Airport had two terminals, please raise their hand.
So we inquire. We have to take a bus to the rental car terminal. Getting on the bus, I forget how to climb stairs, and completely fall down, clutching the stranger in front of me for support. I bring him down with me. It is now 12:15am. I have been awake for 22.25 hours.
We get to Enterprise. They ask me if I'd like to upgrade. No, I just want to go home. Are you sure? Yes, I just want to go home. Oh, well this is the only car we have, so we'll upgrade you for free.
You were going to charge me for you not having my car?
I'm the driver, but I cannot drive. Mike drives.
2:30. We're at the Chico Airport. Rental car is in my name. This is the ONE rental car company whose offices are not at the airport. I can't turn in my rental at the same place that my car is parked. I have to turn it in because it's in my name. I drive home. In the rental car. I fall asleep.
7am. Gabriel wakes up.
I have a rental car with no car seat, and a child. Saturday.....awesome?
I have three pictures from my trip, and I think they're magic:
In Idaho, In the SNOW!! (Holding a Christmas Stocking!!)