Monday, June 14, 2010

Business trip.

It's a good news / bad news thing. The good news is that I'm not chained to a desk. The bad news is that travel is required that's too far to ride a motorcycle! I think I went to Chicago but there's not much to affirm that. All I really saw for the week was O'Hare and a hotel. Corporate made sure we were occupied the whole time. The G11 came along for the ride. Thought I would share a few photos over the next little bit.

Found this little guy in the Chicago airport. He's a present for Ryan. A green Pooh Bear also seems a fitting opening shot, for some reason. I played with a feature of Photoshop that I hadn't tried before. The program has a "photomerge" function. You can blend two or more pictures into one. Not quite the same as Layers but interesting. I took a photo without flash and one with flash. Then I used "Photomerge Exposure" to blend them. The program matched the two pictures exactly. Tripod highly recommended!

Why do these trips always start so early in the morning? My alarm was set for 3 AM. Had to drive an hour and a half to the airport. There was already a crowd at the airport so I wasn't the only early bird. I have to give Alaska Airlines staff high marks for their efficiency in getting everyone through the baggage check process. It helped that I had checked in online earlier.

Here's my first ride of the day. Portland to Seattle where the bigger bird was flying from.

From Seattle I hitched a ride on a 737-900. Here's the view from seat 21F.

The plane might be a bit faster than my bike but you certainly don't get that feeling of being out in the open and free. In fact, it feels downright hemmed in! On the other hand, it's not a good idea to be out in the breeze at 34,000 feet, either. On the other, other hand, it's entertaining to think of being six miles up and, umm, draining the radiator in the back of the plane, so to speak.

This was my home for the next few days. My room was on the ninth floor looking down at the top of the flat roof. It was reassuring to look down at the air conditioning units and see they were still working. Right across from me was the Doubletree Hotel. I guess business travelers can stand in their respective windows and see if they're wearing the same color underwear as everyone else or not. I chose to pass on that activity.

I'm not sure why the sinks are on top of the counters. My guess is that some laborer forgot to cut the hole in the counter. Then some interior decorator saw it and thought it was a grand idea. These folks are always looking for that "special something" to set them apart. Hey, anybody can put a sink flush with the marble. Check this out! Next thing you know some designer will put them in the middle of the bed.

The reading lamps on each side of the pillows were kind of interesting. I was sure I would bump my head on one of the lamps. Surprisingly, it didn't happen. Of course, the odds were in my favor because Corporate gave us precious little pillow time.

Things got more interesting as the days went on. Beer, food, and a Jewish wedding that I crashed are among the highlights. Did I mention beer and food? Stay tuned.

Miles and smiles,



Richard Machida said...

At least it looks like a nice hotel. I get the opportunity to travel with my job and, generally, I like getting out once and a while. I guess I don't understand the "photomerge" function in the first shot and what was done in Photoshop. I've only played with that program a bit. Never really dug very deep.

Chuck Pefley said...

A sink in the middle of the bed could be convenient at times. LOL!!

bobskoot said...


glad you made it back safe and sound. Having to travel great distances is just a byproduct of fuelling the 2 wheeled habit.

Wet Coast Scootin

bluekat said...

Love the ninja-green bear. That should get Ryan on the right path! Photomerge is what I've been using to stitch panos. Awesome feature - almost like cheating.

Ugh - the plane interior is claustrophobic. That's too many people in such a small space. I've never been in a plane. I'm not sure I want to.

Love the wing shot - Great scene!

Jack Riepe said...

Dear IronDad (Dan):

Do you ever read Sojourner's Rides, by Sharon Hicks-Bartlett. She lives in Chicago. You should have dropped her a line.

At the risk of sounding like a dope, I have often admired the bowl sink atop the vanity. In reality, how well does it work? To me, the best amenity in a hotel is seamless, free WiFi.

Fondest regards,
Jack • reep • Toad
Twisted Roads

Anonymous said...

You sound tired ... and no,doesn't sound like a "nice" trip either.
I'm really enjoying your photography too, which at least keeps you busy when not riding!!
peace man \/,,