Sunday, September 18, 2011

When I arrived, I was a little disappointed not to get the royal welcome to which I'd become happily accustomed. Rather, all was relatively quiet and boring in the baggage area. Although there were porters, they weren't clamoring and fighting to handle my bags. Apparently the airport has cracked down and told those who are allowed to handle baggage that they need to allow the customer to come to them, and for the most part they are complying. Shortly after Paul and I found each other, we did hear someone call, "Tango Mike!" and turned to saw a traffic controller bustling forward to greet us. (For those readers who don't spend much time around aircraft, the "name" of the airplane is the combination of numbers and letters painted on it, pronounced in the international aviation alphabet. The airplane here is N123TM, so when Paul is flying the controllers call him "November One Two Three Tango Mike", or "Tango Mike" for short.) After we collected my suitcases and left the baggage area, I got my welcoming committee. Half a dozen or so young men were standing around, hoping to find passengers who wanted help loading their cars. They all greeted us excitedly, so I got to hear the "Madame Paul!" that tells me I am truly back. As we walked to the car, several of them tagged along, chatting and asking about our family. When we got to the car, they insisted good naturedly that they had been guarding it and that we owed them money. We reminded them that Paul hadn't asked anyone to guard the car, so they asked if we had a little money for him to get some coffee. Paul told him truthfully that he had no change, and the man said, "Okay, next time." Next time he will remind Paul that he "promised" to give him money.

Still no reliable Internet at home. We have a stick that allows us to get a cell connection, but when I tried to pull up my email this morning, it timed out before I got any messages. We drove into town on Thursday and talked to what is supposed to be the best provider company. For about $300, we can have wireless for the next three months . I am feeling so desperate to get going on my courses that we are considering it, although we didn't budget that much for it.

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