>Houston, We Have a Problem

>That’s the wiseass comment my cousin Paige laid on me when I revealed via Facebook that I had arrived in Houston, yet my luggage failed to arrive with me. Hardy har har indeed. Actually, Facebook is the main reason she and I are in contact, as I haven’t seen her in longer than I can remember. For that it’s pretty cool. Clearly smartassedness isn’t exclusive to my particular branch of the La Tray family tree.

So yeah, I’m in Houston, TX, with only what I’m wearing. Hopefully my stuff will arrive before I leave again. I’d like to bitch and moan, but I’ve been pretty lucky with that kind of thing this year. And it’s my own fault, as I thought about putting an extra change of clothes and contacts and stuff in my carry-on bag, but decided not to. Oops.

So here I am in my Hampton Inn room, and I should be working on something constructive. Here are the dinner options I had to choose from earlier:

Luckily there is a Mexican joint just beyond these places. I am in a horrid location; near big box hell, with a highway splitting access to everything right down the middle. Houston is the land of the u-turn.

Texas also has these blackbirds; I think they might be called Brewer’s Blackbird, or something like it, which I learned after a cursory investigation online. I’m probably wrong, though — I suck at bird identification. Maybe Julia’s dad will read this and enlighten me. I remember seeing just throngs of these things in Austin, particularly in the trees outside the big bookstore there, and then I ran into a bunch of them again here.

That picture doesn’t really do justice to how many there were. They wouldn’t let me get very close to photograph them either. A lot of them were perched atop big SUVs too; I hope they shit all over them. In a darker part of the parking lot they looked like something out of a Hitchcock movie.

I love blackbirds and crows; pretty much anything in the corvid and related families. This next one is one my favorite pictures I’ve taken, just some crows on a winter day in the tree outside the apartment I was living in at the time:

And here is one of another of my favorite birds, the Redwing Blackbird. There is a little wetland near my house, and these things are there in numbers. I love going to the Noon’s convenience store in the morning during the summer and listening to them carry on.

Speaking of birds, for some reason I found it hilarious when I learned some years ago that “bird” is English slang (I think) for “girl” or “woman.” I think they first time I encountered it was reading this book:

Funny, I didn’t realize until just now that Mick Wall wrote this book, that’s how long it has been since I read it. Mick is a great music writer who keeps a blog online as well; he and Ross Halfin worked together much back in the day. Anyway, this was the book where the band would talk about trying to “pull birds” in the clubs, which meant the same thing as “pick up women” over here. I don’t know why that struck me as hilarious. Those crazy Brits. I’m sure that is horribly offensive to someone somewhere, but it still sounds hysterical to me. So here is a nice picture of a pretty bird to soothe any ruffled feathers:


6:00 AM Tuesday morning, reunited!

3 thoughts on “>Houston, We Have a Problem

  1. Chris

    >That would be a MAN and his luggage, ma'am. And it is luggage full of manly travel things too.I wish I knew how to caption pictures on this stupid blog. Kirsten, thanks for commenting. I just checked out your page and tried to leave a comment, but for some reason WordPress doesn't seem to be accepting them from me today; it says I'm logged in and everything, but the comments don't show up. And it isn't just yours either, it also happened on the S&Co page too.


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