September 8

Another bit of panic this morning waking up in a weird place but I knew it wouldn’t last since I was heading out today.  Since I had already packed what I needed to take with me, this was probably the fastest that I have ever gotten out of a hotel.  I grabbed an Uber to the airport which was in the middle of nowhere.  It’s a tricky game trying to figure out how early to get to the airport.  It is recommended to get there 2 hours before the flight.  I used to follow this suggestion to the T.  I always told myself to get through security several hours early is to play it safe.  But the real reason is because I wanted to drink at the airport bar.  I had a whole system.  A few beers in the car, put a couple in my carry on to drink in the bathroom before I went through security, then a few at the bar once past security. And don’t forget the $20 beers on the plane.  I also used to choose longer layovers on purpose to give me more time to drink.  My only concern now is if security will think I am a terrorist with my beard and weird looking luggage.  Its such an easier way to travel.  I still have to find something to do with my self during layovers.  And since most flights I take east of the Mississippi transfer through Charlotte or Atlanta, I make it a mission to see how fast I can get to Bojangles for a chicken biscuit.  Then throw in some people watching and the time flies by.  Thank goodness I booked my flight several days ago before Hurricane Irma changed course because the airports are packed.  People are evacuating trying to get out of the state since the latest reports show the hurricane is going to hit the entire state.  A lot of the flights are overbooked and they are offering vouchers to take a later flight.  Unfortunately none of my flights have been offered because I would be the first to volunteer. 
I was welcomed in Columbus with a professional sign on a napkin that said “River Weasel” in pen by a friend who picked me up.  I felt like a real celebrity.    It was great seeing a familiar face.  The welcome party was larger when I got to my brother’s house.  I was almost tackled by my niece, nephew, and dog.  I’m not sure which of the three was more excited to see me.  But it defiantly felt good to be home.  Well my home away from home since my home feels like my kayak and tent.