Yesterday sucked but I am feeling optimistic this morning. I managed to get up exactly on time even though my cell battery (which is also my alarm) died overnight - it must have been on all day yesterday. I had the desk ring for a cab, which came on time even though it was raining. I asked him to drop me at the Schubert rond, where I figured I'd grab the airport bus to Zaventem. Kind of like the Roissybus leaving from Opera. He said dosh! I will take you for 30 Euros, you are my first customer and it is good to begin the day making someone happy. I was happy! According to the internets a taxi to the airport is usually 50 Euros, and the bus ticket would have cost 10 (and taken an hour and a half at least, with the rain), and the cab 10, so he was giving me a lot of value for that last 10. I was tickled and didn't even mind that he talked the entire way about how Bush is the ACTUAL devil and Obama is a Muslim and sent by actual God and is an actual prophet and angel, so now everything will be OK. Amusingly, it is not only racist rednecks that think Obama is a Muslim! Evidently there is at least one Arabic Muslim cab driver who is also down with that whole idea. I agree that there is something providential about Obama, but I'm not sure he was actually transubstantiated here by the divine, y'know? He was so nice though. I bet big money that he was Iranian. I've had so many good experiences with their kindness and generosity on this trip.

Then I came into the airport and was initially told that I had to check the Red Baron, even though I did all kinds of packing Tetris to get my messenger bag and all of its contents plus my clothes (bye-bye long black cardigan! I hardly knew ye!) into it without even unzipping the expander. So all I had was the laptop bag and the spinner. ALAS! I cried. ALACK!  ALARUMS! Well, not really. I just felt a bit disappointed. And I said "How much to upgrade to have one more carryon," I asked. The desk lady seemed to like very much that I took it in that direction instead of going straight to begging and/or yelling. Her shoulders relaxed and she smiled at me, and said: I will authorize it for free, the plane is far from full this morning.


I think it might be my new hat, which seems to make people smile. It is a little on the whimsical side, it's true.

Then I discovered the entire airport is covered by the wireless company from which I acquired some WiFi time that I couldn't get to work at the Eurostar terminal, but is working fine here, so I get to use it instead of just wasting the money.

Hopefully all will go well getting the Red Baron actually on the plane. Not having to try to find/recuperate it at Heathrow is one hell of a boon.

Oh hey - by the way! Travel tip: the lady at the BMI desk told me that people who check in very early for their flights have a 50% greater chance of losing their luggage because it never goes straight on the truck that will take it to the plane. It goes to another depot, and then back onto a truck, and then on the plane. And she said that it often happens that the baggage people "forget" to go back to the depot to pick up the early luggage.

I also got to talk to K last night and she said that the lady at Vine Farm was cold at first but warmed up eventually. Seriously, what gives with someone being cold and inhospitable and rude if they're going to run a B&B? But whatever. Evidently I don't have to see her much since I'm self-catering, and I'm feeling better about the whole situation after a good night's sleep and a morning of back-to-back small blessings.


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