Ari Invades the South … Again (Day One)
This week was my trip to Birmingham, AL for work. Which of course, is also why I was not streaming on my Twitch channel (http://twitch.tv/maidenariana) at all yet this week. On Monday night, before my trip, I meant to be done packing by 10 pm but I had a busy few days leading up to this. As a result, I was still trying on outfits and packing at close to 1 am. I usually don’t sleep well before a trip because quieting my mind with all of the “don’t forget this!” reminders takes a ton of effort. So, in the pics above and below, I was at one point doing some stretching while wearing one of the dresses I was going to bring with me. Did I invent a yoga pose? I know nothing of actual yoga..
Despite getting to bed late, I felt fairly energetic in the morning. I was going to be flying out with several co-workers so the first step was to drive into the office.
We all carpooled to the airport and I cleared my TSA scan with a huge green “OK” screen. All transgender people know the intense stress this can bring to any trip and I made it through without incident.
Soon, we began the flight to Birmingham. The flight attendant was a sweet older gentlemen who was a bit of a character. As he did his pre-flight seat-belt check, he came over and stopped by my seat, leaned in slightly, and said in a jovial tone, “I can already tell that you’re trouble”. He said there was a mark plain as day on my forehead. I smiled an innocent smile and he continued on his way. Later he saw me adjusting my window then told me there was a fee for every time i changed my mind on where to leave the window. $50 for down, $60 for up and $45 for half-way. I put my hand to my chin as if I was considering my options and he laughed. Shortly after that I was able to snap a photo of the small town where I grew up. It had only 2800 people in it when I moved there and there are not a lot more there now. The subdivision at the top of the image was expanded some after I moved out, but not by much. It is a conservative little town that seems to like staying just the way it is!
As we were nearing Birmingham, the flight attendant came by and tossed a package of gluten-free gummi bears in my lap. The normal snack was a pretzel mix that I could not eat and had declined (I didn’t say why). I think it took him a while to dig around and find those for me so it was really nice of him 🙂 I was blushing a lot from him making a fuss over me and I know the woman to my right noticed. Oh well 🙂 The gummi bears were the perfect snack at that time as I was feeling a little tired.
Once I finished the snack, the plane was beginning to descend to Birmingham. After a mostly clear flight there was a brief storm in the area and there was a beautiful rainbow out my window. The pictures below do not do it justice. Was the rainbow announcing my arrival? Only mother nature knows for certain..
We made it to our hotel and I snapped a quick picture before getting changed to go for a drink and out to dinner..
The hotel gave us all complimentary drink cards so we stopped for a drink at the hotel bar. I chose Mermaid Water. It was Coconut Rum, Vodka, Blue Cara-something and pineapple juice. It was so good, I had one the next night too 🙂
After finishing these drinks we went out to an Italian restaurant and I was able to get a gluten free pizza.
My only complaint for the flight out was that the plane was sweltering as we boarded and waited for clearance to taxi to the runway (usually the air conditioning helps more than it did – I think it was kind of faulty on this particular plane). Otherwise, the trip out was great and so was the evening that followed.
I will write up the story from day 2 and 3 later 😉
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