22 August 2005

Upcoming travel plans

Freshly rejuvenated from my Las Vegas mini-vacation, I am looking forward to two new trips.

The first one will most likely take me along the Central California coast, up to San Francisco Bay Area and into Napa Valley, for the Labor Day Weekend. I want this one to be a solo trip as well, although my mother wants to squeeze her way in. I will try to talk her out of this trip though, as I don't want to take her around on EVERY trip I go on (besides, I do intend to take her to Carlsbad Caverns for Thanksgiving). Seriously, I really want to be on my own, exploring the world that my novel characters, Sarah and Kirsten, live in, including the streets of Berkeley, the high school in Pacifica where Sarah grew up, the United Airlines hub at San Francisco Airport where Sarah worked, etc. (In fact, since Kirsten is really my alter ego, my very presence in Berkeley pretty much brings her into existence, I presume.) Being on my own will also allow me to explore San Francisco's counterculture relics at my own pace, though I pretty much gave up on the gay San Francisco (except maybe the new Gay Center, Sarah's current employer).

The second one will be toward the end of September, where I will need to be in Washington, DC on a business trip. I am shooting for getting in town several days early, so that I can attend the major antiwar protest over the preceding weekend. I will need to take a week off in any case, so I will try my best. If all else fails, I will still have an opportunity to meet up with the founders of Democracy Cell Project, but I do want to participate in some of the protest activities if I can at all. It will be a very empowering trip, for sure. I will look at my schedule more closely before I commit to firm dates and reserve my air transportation and hotel. It looks like, for the first time, I will fly American Airlines; though Democratic activists may prefer that I fly George Soros-owned JetBlue, I'll be happy that I'll be able to get some perks for my favorite gay community center as I fly, since many, if not most, gay centers have "Business ExtrAA" reward accounts with American which I can name in my reservation.

Both trips will allow me to express myself more freely than I ever could at home, and I will look forward to both.