This Friday morning finds me sitting at Gate 68 in Terminal C of Kansas City International Airport. I am early for my midday flight to Tampa, Florida - but I would much rather be early than have to go through the hassle of rushing.
The good news at KCI is that this is easily the most accessible airport in the nation. I am sitting at the departure gate not more than a hundred yards from where Tim dropped me off a short time ago. The airport isn't that old - in fact, I can remember when it was new - but the city is already talking about building another one, a bigger, more exhaustive airport where passengers have to walk miles to get from one gate to another. Of course, that will permit more in the way of airport shopping and commerce which is most likely the real reason they want to screw with something that works just fine like it is - thank you very much!
The other good news at KCI is that the WiFi is free. I have been in airports where not only is there a robust charge for connectivity, but the process to get on-line is also difficult. Here it was just one click.
The bad news is that an anal-retentive TSA lackey took away my new eight-ounce bottle of Listerine mouthwash. He didn't look like he had a personal affinity for mouthwash, so I assume he was just an over-zealous, low-level government functionary who supplements a modest income with the joys of harassing weary travelers. I did ask another TSA worker what would become of my unopened bottle of mouthwash, and he told he that it would be thrown away. They ought to at least find some charitable outlet that could benefit from the piles of confiscated goods that TSA cabbages onto each day.
(I'll bet if it was an unopened bottle of Jack Daniels they wouldn't throw it away.)
Yesterday on the long drive from West Plains to Kansas City the car radio featured wall-to-wall stories about a pair of royals - and not the Kansas City variety.
First of all the Queen, Her Nibs - Elizabeth II of Great Britain - was partying-down in celebration of the ninetieth anniversary of her birth. Liz, who came to the throne as a mere slip of a young woman while in her early twenties, has recently become the longest serving monarch in British history. Her family party was yesterday, and today the Obama's are showing up for a leftover cake and tea.
Elizabeth's birthday was the news before noon, but about lunch time a story broke regarding the death of Prince, the singer, songwriter, and pop music icon. The music legend was found dead in an elevator at his home in Minneapolis. I listened to two or three stations during the drive, primarily out of Springfield and Kansas City, and each was concentrating on the life and music of Prince. By the time I got to Tim and Erin's home, I had acquired a substantial amount of Prince trivia - and was humming "Purple Rain" and "Little Red Corvette." He was only fifty-seven.
Tampa today, Havana mañana! Adios, amigos!