NYE 2001: The End – 1

Working our way backwards this time, this is how we managed to make it home.

So I’m telling our NYE 2001 story from both ends, working my way towards the glorious middle, the amazing meal we had at Cinnabar. This time, our flight home.

We arrive at LAX two and a half hours before our flight, lit like Xmas trees (that’ll be another post), and we breeze through security (except for them finding that third corkscrew, that is). We’re now in the airport with more than two hours to kill.

So we head to the bar.

We spy a little Mexican cantina-style bar, drag our crap in, and take two stools. I’m not quite as drunk as Rochelle, so I want to “catch up” (a whole ‘nother story). I tell Rochelle to order me a shot of tequila and a beer, while I go use the bathroom. Two shots and two beers later we’re $27 poorer. Airport bars suck.

We head to the gate, get in the very long line to get our boarding passes, and meet a really nice woman who, it turns out, works at UC Berkeley, where I used to work, and we know some of the same people. The three of us have a great time talking, and we decide to sit together on the plane.

Except Katherine gets unlucky, is one of those randomly chosen to make an extra pass through the security apparatus, and we disappear onto the plane without her.

We’re boarding late, so the plane is quite full, and we have to go all the way to the back to find a row with three empty seats. There’s lots of people in the aisles, and when Rochelle has a little trouble dragging her suitcase around one group, the flight attendant asks if she is all right. I’m sure it was just the people, and had nothing to do with the amount we’d had to drink. ;-)

We get settled, Katherine rejoins us, and the plane takes off. Probably uneventfully, but none of us would remember it.

When the flight attendant comes around to serve drinks, she proactively asserts that they cannot serve Rochelle alcohol (we were talking pretty loudly while waiting at the gate, I’m sure they knew the score).

That’s fine with Rochelle, she’s got a headache, and is ready to pass out anyway, sparkling water for her. Katherine and I get two white wines. Rochelle eventually wakes up, and the three of us continue talking until we’re in Oakland, quite suddenly it seemed to us.

We get off the plane, make promises to get together again, and say our goodbyes. Rochelle and I make our way home to, well, you already know that one.