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According this this article, if your size does not allow you to put down the armrests or fasten your seat belt, United will now require you to buy two seats instead of one. I understand that weight, for the most part, is controllable. But even at my very normal size, those seats are TOO SMALL for comfort. Baby got back! Let’s increase those seat sizes, please!

Also, if airlines can charge their customers extra for their size, then I think government should fine the airlines for not complying with customers’ height needs. I’m a mere 5’6” and I am terribly uncomfortable in those cabin seats. I can’t imagine how cramped it is for taller folks.

Stepping off soapbox…


The Dawning of DST in Indiana

Until April 2005, when Indiana passed a law agreeing to observe daylight saving time, the Hoosier state had its own unique and complex time system. Not only is the state split between two time zones, but until recently, only some parts of the state observed daylight saving time while the majority did not.

Under the old system, 77 of the state’s 92 counties were in the Eastern Time Zone but did not change to daylight time in April. Instead they remained on standard time all year. That is, except for two counties near Cincinnati, Ohio, and Louisville, Ky., which did use daylight time.

But the counties in the northwest corner of the state (near Chicago) and the southwestern tip (near Evansville), which are in the Central Time Zone, used both standard and daylight time.

The battle between the old system and DST was contentious and hard-won—bills proposing DST had failed more than two dozen times until finally squeaking through the state legislature in April 2005. As of April 2, 2006, the entire state of Indiana joined 47 other states in observing Daylight Saving Time. But it wasn’t quite as simple and straightforward as all that—telling time in Indiana remains something of a bewildering experience: eighteen counties now observed Central Daylight Time and the remaining 74 counties of Indiana observe Eastern Daylight Time.


I went to college in Eastern Indiana. On weekends, I’d often drive back “home” to see family in Northwest Indiana (as Texas was a little too far for a weekend drive). Depending on the time of year, I’d either loose or gain an hour each way. Total pain in the butt. And now my Hoosiers are permanently split between two time zones.

Indiana, why are you so complicated? You know, totally unlike California… 😉

The roomie and I are brainstorming an upcoming road-trip to the super weird Salton Sea, Salvation Mountin, and Slab City area.

I’ve been wanting to go for about a year now, and it’s gonna happen in 2009. Probably February. Interested?

After a whirlwind 10 day trip, I’m back! Despite several setbacks, I still had a great time.

I survived:

– having my luggage “lost,” for a day

– vomiting for 24 hours straight, then not being able to eat for 2 more days

– having my ID and debit card go missing from my back pocket, thankfully to be returned this morning before I had to board my flight. 

I’m exhausted. Hopefully I’ll have more interesting ideas for blog topics soon. Until then…

I stopped vomitting long enough to take a quick boat ride with Dad and do a little fishing before I left sunny, warm SW Florida for overcast, not terribly cold Texas.

I still can’t eat much of anything, but am grateful to be up and about.

I hope you all are having a lovely Christmas!


After 11 hours of travel by car, bus, and two planes, I stood at the airport  luggage carousel for over twenty minutes, waiting for any sign of our flight’s luggage.

And then a few bags came around.

And around…

And around…

And then the carousel stopped.

A lady came out and announced that they (United via Sky West) had lost ALL our bags.

My response? I just sort of chuckled. That weird feeling I had the day before I left – the feeling I had when I paid the pointless $15 fee for my checked bag* – it was a premonition of sorts. I had an inkling that my brand new heavy duty Samsonite roller luggage would not arrive in Florida with me. So did I pack at least a pair of clean underwear in my carry-on for such a circumstance? No, because I did not want to entertain the thought. So, there I was, luggageless (and clean underwearless)  despite my amazingly on-spot intuition.

Knowing there was nothing else I could do, I called my dad, and gave him both the good and bad news (the good being that I had arrived; the bad being that my bag had not). He picked me up and I called to file a lost/delayed luggage claim. And I was put on hold.

And I held…

And I held…

After about 20-30 minutes, an agent finally got to the bottom of it. Apparently my bag never left Chicago (my layover city). 

After a follow up call earlier today, an automated customer service robot promised my bag would be delivered between 2:30-4:30 tonight. But it was not.

And so I called baggage claim service.

And I held.

And I was disconnected. Again…

And I got a busy signal. Again..and again…

Until I finally got through to a person (after several hours), and was told that “due to delivery challenges, my bag would not be delivered on time, but rather several hours late.”

My bag FINALLY arrived at Dad’s doorstep at 6:30 tonight. 

This is the FOURTH time an airline has lost (and therefore had to deliver) my luggage. I suppose for the amount of traveling I do, that’s a fairly low percentage. But STILL.

Has this little setback ruined my trip? Not a chance. I’m on one of the most beautiful islands in Florida, and saying that it’s kick-back is an understatement. I’m loving it. (I’m also loving “my” adorable little black cat, Spook. He’s the best cat in the world, and I missed him so much!)** 

Tomorrow Dad and I leave for Santa Maria Island to hang with more people who share my last name, some of whom I haven’t seen in over 7 years. Should be fun!


*It’s really too bad that the new $15 fee per checked bag does not result in better service.

**Yes, I want to be a cat lady.

Who likes discount travel? I do!

I like to poach helpful tips and products from other places and share them here. This list comes via Real Simple (…

You probably already know about Orbitz, Expedia, and Travelocity for finding cheap airfare. But newer “meta” travel search engines comb through these and other sites, rooting out even deeper discounts for airfare, hotels, and car rentals: (works with the browsers Safari 1.2 on Macs and Windows Netscape 7.1 on PCs)

Each site has a different agreement with airlines, car-rental services, hotels, and independent sites (like, so they won’t display the same results.

I’ve been using Kayak for a couple years now, but I didn’t know about the others on this list. I hope these are helpful to you.


Happy (cheap) travels!