Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Stanford

I will be spending two weeks with my brother at Stanford over Christmas. My residence (Place Vanier) does not allow anyone access to their rooms from December 19th to January 7th. I just arrived at Stanford last night, and encountered a few annoying problems on the trip:

1) While packing I realized I didn't have any plane tickets. Since this seemed like a fairly major problem, I spent about an hour checking and rechecking through all my papers looking for them. I had purchased the tickets over a month ago, so I assumed that I somehow lost the tickets. After doing some research online I finally realized that I had purchased electronic tickets, and all I needed was a reservation number in order to board the plane!

2) While boarding the bus to Seattle the bus driver couldn't find my reservation number on her list. She wouldn't let me board the bus if I wasn't on the list. After carefully going through the list for around 5 minutes, she realized that she misread one of my numbers, and that I was actually on the list after all.

3) My original flight from Seattle was scheduled to start boarding at 2:10pm. With no real explanation, they delayed the flight by an hour, and we started boarding at 3. After everyone was in the plane and it started heading down the runway, the airplane stopped and just waited there for about 10 minutes. Finally the pilot explains to us that there was some sort of problem with the rudder, and we had to head back towards the gate. After a full hour waiting in the plane while mechanics tried to fix the problem, they decided to cancel the flight. At least they found out about the problem before we were actually in the air. I got a booked on another flight that was supposed to leave at 8:30pm, but this flight also got delayed an entire hour without any explanation. I have decided that I will avoid flying with Alaska Airlines in the future.

One interesting fact about my trip is that I was playing music on my PSP nonstop for the entire 16 hour duration (on what should have been a 9 hour trip). I believe this may have broken some sort of PSP battery life record, since I was reading an article at IGN which claimed less than 11 hours of MP3 playback on the PSP [link]. Even after the trip the battery level was still at 9%. By the end of the 16 hours I was very sick of listening to the same Yoko Kanno songs over and over again.

I left my computer on in my room so I can use it for remote computing. Stanford and UBC share an Internet2 connection, so I get an excellent network connection to my remote desktop. My only worry is that they might power down my building's electricity over Christmas, which would prevent me from accessing my computer :(.
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