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The Returning of the Sam

I returned Sam to Mom last night, and she's driving Sam and Jackson to Chris and Michelle later this morning.

Sam and I left last night for the airport at 4:40, for our flight at 5:50. Mike tried to clue me in that I wanted to leave earlier, rush hour traffic, 101 backing up, carpool won't help, but all I heard was "... spend a full hour at the airport with a semi-bored kid. How about it?"

So, we left late.

And 101 was backed up.

And the carpool lane stopped.

Just like Mike said.

Taking Central, Mike managed to get us to the airport by 5:10. Somehow, the bags I had carried out to California were twice as heavy going back to Arizana. How does that kid do it? Especially since we were carrying less stuff back.

When we arrived at the top of the escalator, my heart sank as I saw the security line wrap down around the corner. "Well, kid, you might just have to stay with me an extra night."

Sam perked up. "Really?!"

"We'll see."

We made it through the first part of the security line. After my boarding pass was matched against my identification, the agent, in the most uncomprehensible Asian accent, asked Sam, "Your name is Samuel?" which sounded more like "Yoo nahm-es Soh-moo-oo?"

Sam looked at him and replied, "No."

My stomach sank.

"Yoo nahm-es naht Soh-moo-oo?"


Crap! Kid, don't do this to me. I repeated the question, "Hey Sam, your name is Samuel, right?"

He looked at me. "No."


The agent looked up a me suspiciously.

I tried again.

"Sam, what's your full name?"

"Samuel ****** Hodsden."


The agent smiled. "Yoo no go bee Soh-moo-oo?"

Sam looked at him agitated, "No!"

Move along! Move along, kid! Phew! Through the line!

After getting through the security line, finding the gate took another five, so by the time we lined up at the back of the A queue, we were reading to board. Whoo!

Sam really wanted to sit at the window this time. I didn't allow him to sit at the window on the way out because I was worried about the two of us having to use the restroom a billion times on the flight, so we were middle and aisle on the way out. On the way back, however, Sam was having none of this aisle crap, and plunked his little butt down in the first row with a free window seat.

Which was also the first row. And no underseat storage space.

I had to go back to row four to find a place to stow the bags, which completely endeared me to my fellow passengers as I moved back to row one, pushing past everyone trying to find seats. Twice, once for each bag. Good lord, people, move out of my way!

The flight was completely uneventful, thankfully, and Sam took a few pictures with my camera phone. Some, not so good. The ones of the bulkhead, for example. Others I thought were really good: the sunset and landscapes. I was surprised at his eye for the latter: he became very excited when he saw the city squares and just had to get a picture of them.

Not bad for a five year old: