Xmas 2006

Deep in the Heart of Texas

Welcome to the FitzMaurice year of 2006. This is the eleventh Christmas letter we’ve written, which shows you folks have a tremendous tolerance level.
Most of the year proceeded as usual. Carolyn ran her first autocross, I finally won a championship, but the year went as normal, Florida in February, South Carolina in August, racing the rest of the time. March proved to be the joker in the deck of 2006.
Volvo introduced a new retractable hard top convertible this year. When you think about convertibles, what do you think of? Texas! I think of Hawaii, but, I wasn’t in charge of this trip. It’s off to San Antonio we go to see the new car. San Antonio is wonderful town, a strong Spanish influence, old churches, Mexican food, and the Riverwalk downtown that has to be seen. We extended our trip one day, so Carolyn and I could see the sites together and have some down time.
Thursday morning, bright and early, we return our rental car, and head for the terminal for a 9:00 a.m. flight. By 10:00 a.m., it was clear that our flight was going to be a little delayed. By 3:00 p.m. it was clear that our flight was going to be a lot delayed, By 7:00 p.m. the gate personnel were beginning to call for backup At 11:00 p.m., the airline, after calling the cops to quell the impending riot, finally admitted that a) the spare parts for our plane were no where to be found, b) if they did find them, they didn’t have a flight crew and c) the other plane we were promised was a figment of someone’s imagination. So it was off to a hotel to spend a night in the ghetto of San Antonio, at the intersection of Drive By Shooting Avenue and Prostitute Street. Of course, the bar closed five minutes before we got there.
Friday morning, up bright and early but something told me to check on the computer for flight information. Our 9:00 flight was rescheduled to 3:00 p.m. At the airport we were basically abandoned by the Delta staff. One by one, people from our flight were sneaking out of Texas by hook or crook. We were like a little tribe. We would all cheer when someone finally escaped the San Antonio Terminal and Jail.
The gate personnel had gotten us two stand by seats on a San Antonio – Orlando – Atlanta – Hartford flight. Of course, we got bumped off of that. I contacted rental car companies and got prices for cars one way, Texas to Connecticut. We tracked down a supervisor, offered him the chance to get rid of us. He refused, until someone told him they thought we had gotten on the other flight and sold our seats. Now we didn’t even have the seats we paid for. Carolyn got a little intense, cash money was exchanged, and it was off to Avis to get our exciting high performance Hyundai. Yup, it’s a Hyundai.
Our luggage was gone; it had made a plane on Thursday. We had laundry and our shaving kits, a chunk of Delta’s cash and a vague idea of where to go. I figured we had 2200 miles to drive to get home. We found an outlet park right off the highway and spent 30 minutes picking out clothes, a map, and a cooler. It’s weird putting all new clothes.
Looking at the map, I saw we went by Nashville TN. I knew Southwest had a non stop, Nashville – Hartford, so the Music City became our goal. After driving almost 900 miles on Saturday, Sunday morning, we got up, turned in the Hyundai at the Nashville Airport, stood in line like good Southwest passengers, and finally flew home, four day late. And we’re still married.

Kevin & Carolyn

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