Saturday, April 09, 2011

Back home, day 2

Spent most of the day zoning out. It must be creeping old age, but spending a week on travel tired me out more than I expected. I got up late, ran some errands, took a shower, and then crashed for a nap. Then struggled awake again, ran some more errands including the grocery shopping run, and here it is around 8pm and I feel exhausted, as if I really did something instead of slacking off.

Biggest problem is flying, but it didn't used to be that way. Once upon a time I actually enjoyed flying, and looked forward to the flight as an enjoyable part of the trip.

When I was growing up a number of family members were involved with commercial aviation. My dad worked for Delta (Atlanta), one uncle was a pilot for Southern, then Northwest (due to merges), and I had another uncle who worked as a mechanic for Eastern before it went belly up.

Because my dad worked for Delta I got to fly for free (standby). When I worked for Digital Communications Associates (DCA) in Atlanta in the early 1980's, I was on travel six months out of twelve. Up until I stopped all that travel in 1984, I never had a complaint about any of the airlines, and I usually flew coach (every once in a while I had enough points to upgrade to business class, which was a real luxury).

Every flight that was longer than one hour had a meal served on board. For flights that were two hours or longer, the meals were actually quite good. Now, you're lucky to get a cup of soda and a few bags of peanuts or pretzels.

In spite of what the airlines say the seats on aircraft have shrunk, with the worse shrinkage in the 737. If I'm flying out of Orlando, I now look more for a given aircraft than a given airline. As a consequence, I won't fly anything on Southwest. On the trip up to Boston and back, I flew up on an MD-88 (what was originally the DC-9). The seating was 3:2 (three on port, two starboard). On the way back I few an Airbus 320 with 3:3 seating (three seats on both sides of the aircraft). I may be badly mistaken, but I could have sworn that the DC-9 entered service with Delta as a 2:2 configuration. At 3:2 the seats are narrow and cramped. The Airbus was much better by comparison, but it was still cramped. And both flights were full.

Add to that the insults added by the TSA, and I've reach a point where I will fly only if it's absolutely necessary. If there's any other way to get to my destination, I'll either drive or take the bus.

Anyway...

Driving out to get groceries I passed where the latest major construction is going up on Turkeylake, just north of the intersection with Sandlake Road.

Going up

This project is across the road from the still-empty building that was finished last year.

Another Empty Storefront
Empty business section across the street (photo taken October 2010).

As far as I can tell, all the pylons have been cast. Three weeks ago, the crane had just gone up and only a few of the pylons has been cast, and fewer still had their rebar in place.

Construction area with crane

And finally, the Orlando gas report. I put gas in the Prius on Saturday, the day before I flew up to Boston. I paid $3.50/gallon unleaded. Today, one week later, the price at the same station was $3.75. I've seen it as high as $3.79 other places.

Gas Prices 9 April 2011

I'm curious to know why the price keeps creeping up, but I'm not surprised. I've "forecast" already that we'll be paying north of $4/gallone by the start of summer. And it won't go back down like it did in 2008.

Technical

Three of the four photos were taken with the Olympus E-1. The second photo was taken with the E-3.

With this post I've exceeded the total number of posts I wrote for 2006.

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