slowly surely + xyz : a journey of (re)discovery

I AM. Greeted

By InspiredJourney

 

This morning was a mini adventure, in that I was awake and prepping to leave the house by 04:00.

Because you’re reading this, it means I was successful at discovering an alternate plan of getting to SFO without cutting it close using BART (Bay Area Rapid Transit), our underground train system. I had to take be at a bus stop at just after 04:00 to arrive at the airport with an hour to get through security and any other glitches before getting to my gate and ready for take off.

I adore the peace and stillness that happen between the hours of 3am-5am, when I have nothing more to do than be still. However, this morning, I was a bit frazzled, as I was awakened by an alarm I rarely use. My natural clock has me away anytime between 5-5:30am. There are times I wake earlier, but I didn’t want to take any chances of oversleeping this morning.

Frazzled, yet up and preparing my in-flight meals salads and snacks together for the Basic Economy ticket I’d purchased with Delta. It was my first time doing so, and wasn’t sure how serious the stated restrictions were. So, I opted to pack all I thought I might need regarding food and entertainment.

Dressed, I meet my deadline to leave the house at 03:45, to locate a bus stop I’ve never been, to take a bus I’ve never taken (in the dark) for a one hour ride to the airport.

I walk, and am in the vicinity of where the bus stop is said to be. The internet told me so, but I pad my time to insure I get to the right place. I’m in the general area, but don’t see a marker. I pass two men sitting on a half wall. I wrongly made the assumption they were part of out local community of people living on the street, rather that waiting for said bus.

I’m reach the intersection looking around for marker. None. I see a man walking and inquire if he knows of this shy bus stop marker.

No.

I stand on the corner looking in the direction the bus will come from, hoping to be able to see it, before it gets too close, because I want to be able to flag a signal and run if needed.

I see headlights, but wasn’t able to make a distinction of headlights of the bus, until it was faaaast approaching. The traffic lights weren’t in my favor at this moment. He had the green light and was zooming.

I franticly wave my all-purpose orangish scarf, sarong, head wrap to get his attention. He speeds through the light, and comes to a stop across the other side of the street, where to two men had been sitting. Fortunaely I travel light, with my 15L backpack, as I was able to run.
On the bus I thank the driver for not speeding off, as he admonishes me for not being at the proper stop. I ignore his energy and go on to let convey my lack of knowledge of the system, and am it’s my first time, as I’m only trying to get to the airport for the first flight of the day.

My energy rebuffed his, and he was kind and talkative the rest of the trip.

On time, I get my turn to be felt up by TSA. When traveling, I dress in layers to wear the clothing that would use too much space in my bag. This means I need additional touch coming through the body machine. Also, because I generally travel wearing a stretch cami top, I opt to be felt up in private, as to not feel as if I’m undressing in front of the public.

This trip was no different, but I got through security safely and without any violation to my body…lol.

Boarding the flight with efficient.

I get to my row to meet a mom sitting in the middle seat asking if I mind that she’d snuggly buckled her toddler and car seat into my window seat. I didn’t mind, as the aisle seat was okay with me. I’m more interested in being on a safe flight to anywhere, and could care-less about seat politics. Well, I wouldn’t choose a middle seat. But if that’s the only seat for me on the plane, I’m going…LOL.

Air born.

Everything was great, minus the neon blue disco lights that line the walls of the plane! This was a migraine in waiting! The light was so weird. It wasn’t black-light, but close, in that it lit up both my pink and row mate’s orange nail polish as if we were at a rave. We were neon glowing sisters. The only thing missing was banging music.

Onboard was great!

I didn’t want for much on that flight. They were more generous than the description of Basic Economy read on Delta’s website. I had the impression that I’d be singled out as the third-class passenger due to having booked the class of ticket. Not the case. My seat wasn’t mark, nor was there any differentiating among passengers. Classy Delta, Classy.

Arrival.

Atlanta.

Task One: Get a train ticket.

I stepped in line to purchase my ticket to be met with a similar machine as here and Los Angeles. The two other cities I’ve been recently with this same system. The one difference between San Francisco and the others, an extra charge of $1 for the physical ticket issued. This really annoyed me. San Francisco had a fare increase this past summer, but the price of the paper itself is included in the fare, and thus makes a single trip here $0.75 less that in Atlanta and LA (I’m not sure the exact difference, but there is an additional charge for the card).

Up the escalator and onto the platform, Atlanta’s heat abruptly meets my long black dress covering the black stretch cami, camouflage Levi’s cargo pants, socks in shoes and Gap denim jacket. I was hot!

Fifteen minutes later, I’m exiting the station and walking to the shop.

In the historic African America section of town, I’m met with loads of black people coming and going, gather and lounging on benches in groups as they talk. Car whizzing to and fro. It’s busy. It’s foreign. I feel good being away from San Francisco.

A short four minute walk later, I’m at the door of the shop.
I open it.
I’m me with:
“I thought I saw you standing on the corner. I thought to stop, but I kept going and wondered if that were you!”, as my godmother’s questions as her current convo is interrupted by my entrance.

‘Nah, wasn’t me. I just got of a flight.”

I do my best to ease in as if I’m there everyday.

As I slowly made my way deeper into the shop, I eventually make a corner where my godfather is sitting behind a sewing machine.

“Wah. Look at she na…”, he says with a cautious smile.

I speak as a have a seat.

“Hey Baba.”

And so it begins.



Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Subscribe: email