Thursday, June 14, 2012

On the Way to China!

I am currently house sitting at my Dad's place while he and Nancy are traveling in China. He asked me to post emails that he sends to me into his blog in order to share his experiences and impressions of the country.  He can't post them directly due to the Chinese government's block on Google. (This blog is a Google product, so he can't access it.) While this isn't his first trip there, I'm sure he will have many new things to share. -- Roger Frank

Gate K12 Chicago O'Hare Airport - June 13, 2012

We had over 2.5 hours to wait for our next flight that would take us to Shanghai where we will begin our 18 day China adventure. While Nancy and I are not in China we both are in the spirit of having a good, no... outstanding vacation.

After a 15 minute walk to get to gate K12 where we are to board American Airline's flight 289, I started to read "Planet China" on my Kindle. Soon I started my favorite airport pastime, people watching.

Here are my thoughts and observations at gate K12:

* Where are all the pieces of wheel-less luggage? You know the ones you had to pickup and carry. I did not see one. You might find one in my basement. Nancy says she has seen them for sale at an Ann Arbor yard sale for 50 cents. I suppose they would be useful for camping trips.

* During a stroll through one of the many concourses  at O'Hare I find a Barbara's Bookstore. The store jogs a pleasant memory. While visiting John and Charlaine when they lived in Oak Park, IL they introduced me to Barbara's Bookstore. A real classy place. I find it too difficult passing a bookstore especially you have time on your hands. I'm attracted to a couple of hardcovers. Well I left my magazines and books (hard cover type) at home in favor of those on my Kindle and iPad. I wonder just how many books were bought at an airport and never finished? I mean those that were started while waiting at a gate then read on the plane but then shelved at home unfinished. While I can't recall buying any at an airport, I've got some unfinished ones on my bookshelf.

* While washing my hands in the Men's room, I look in this crystal clear mirror above the sink when suddenly my image dissolves into the face of a sexy young woman (hey, believe me I didn't touch a frog like those in a fairy tale) I'm not sure what the ad promoted aftershave lotion I guess. What a creative but expensive way to advertise. Sorry, no photo shot for this observation.

* Upon returning to gate K12, there's Nancy teaching a little Chinese boy how to draw using her colored pencils. In a few minutes the drawing session was over, and the boy returned to his parents who were sitting two in front of us. Nancy is in her element when teaching people to draw or sail a boat. After Nancy left for a walk, I asked the boy's parents if I could take a picture of him. Of course they were delighted. After I took three shots, I asked his mother his age. She and her husband beamed ear to ear as she said, "Four -- four next Sunday".

* My final observation was another unique ad as we got the call to board American Airlines flight 289 for Shanghai. This ad was from of all people the Peace Corps! When was the last time you saw a Peace Corps ad? It was on a lighted panel located between two boarding podiums. It said, "Never have to start sentences with "I should've…". While I agree, but I find that difficult to do.

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