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Back In the Land of Sunshine and Relaxation

Friday 03/10/2006 12:14 PM

Tuesday morning, before I flew back to Tallahassee, Candy cracked open the leftover half chocolate coated fortune cookie from Wahso. When I saw the unbelievable words printed in pink letters on the little strip of paper, I knew I had yet another picture to take. I carefully pieced the fortune cookie back together and captured your image of the day.

At the airport, once I got through security with my brother-in-law George's belated birthday present sticking out of the top of one of my carry-on bags, it was time for breakfast. Do you know that it is almost impossible to find a hot dog in the Salt Lake City airport? Must be a Mormon thing.

I finally found a little airport lounge where I was able to get a hot dog and a kahlua & cream. If that's not the breakfast of champions, I don't know what is. They charged me about seven bucks for the drink and about 3 bucks for the hot dog, making it a total of $10.72. Two bucks for a tip and I got out of there for $12.72.

Several hours later, I found myself wandering around the Atlanta airport looking for something to eat. Since breakfast turned out so well, I reasoned, why not have the same thing for lunch? So I stopped at a lounge I've been to many times before and ordered the same. The hot dog wasn't quite as good, but the price for the overall meal was remarkably similar. Almost five dollars for the drink and about the same for the dog made the total $10.46. Two dollars for the waitress and I was down another $12.46.

That's about a 2% difference for the same meal at two different lounges in two different airports in two different cities in two different states in two different halves of the country. Pretty cool, eh?

When I got on the plane to Tallahassee, I was hoping to have my three seats to myself (I'll take empty seats next to me in steerage instead of one seat in business class — unless I'm flying overseas). As it turned out, there were a whole bunch of people who were determined to make their way to Tallahassee Tuesday night. I ended up having a seventh grader from Dothan, Alabama sitting next to me. I said my name was Peter and when I shook his hand, he told me his name was Parker. I said, "Between the two of us, we're Spiderman." He thought that was pretty funny.

We chatted for a little bit and I learned he had been visiting friends in California. While he was there, he got to see Hollywood. I asked him if he went to the Oscars and he said, no, but he did go there the next day. After confirming with him that he didn't win any awards Sunday night, I quizzed Parker on some geography and he did really well. He figured out that Kalamazoo was in Michigan and he knew Salt Lake City was in Utah.

I asked Parker if he knew what the Great Salt Lake was and he said he didn't. I explained that a lot of Mormons live in Utah and they have this annual tradition that's been going on for more than a hundred years where everyone carries their salt shaker out to this lake and shakes all the salt into the water. With hundreds of thousands of people doing this decade after decade, they've created the Great Salt Lake.

He smiled and looked at me and then looked away. I said, "You look like you don't believe me." He glanced back and shook his head with a smile. Then I went on to tell him the truth about King Kong spilling his salt shaker when he stopped for lunch that one time while crossing the Rocky Mountains.

When I got back to Tallahassee, Candy's car wouldn't start. So I took a cab home. George gave me a ride back to the ariport and we were able to get the car going. Since it started the next morning just fine, we're chalking it up as "one of those things." The boys were happy to see me and I was thrilled to see Candy the next day when I picked her up at the airport the next day.

Starting with my next post, I'll pick up where I left off and tell you more about our trip to Salt Lake City. I've got some great pictures.


(Ta Ta For Now)

File Under: Salt Lake City; Travel

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