I finally got home from my trip, which is awesome because I was having zero luck adjusting to EST.
And fuckin’ trees, everywhere!
Okay, let me take a minute to point some things out. I live in Las Vegas. I’m a Vegas native (a rare breed, due to the transient nature of the town). And, for those unfamiliar with the city, it’s smack dab in the middle of a valley, and it’s a desert.
At any given time, at almost any given place in the city, I can look out and see all the way to the mountains in at least one direction.
So for shits and giggles, I decided to prove it. I took these today, while sitting at a red light, on Las Vegas Boulevard, maybe 2 miles south of the Strip. One was taken of the view directly in front of me, one was taken of the view directly behind me, one was taken directly to my right, and one was taken directly to my left. You can see the mountains in all four.
And that’s what I’m used to.
So when I go to the South, and I’m surrounded by trees, and they line the sides of the road, and you can’t see a tenth of a mile in front of you, it’s a little disconcerting. I always feel a little claustrophobic, and driving is always just slightly unsettling.
The humidity is awful, too. I felt it as soon as I walked off the plane, and onto the jetway. Again, Vegas is a desert. It doesn’t rain here all that much (particularly since we’re in the middle of the worst drought in recorded history). Like, Las Vegans (myself included) can “feel it” when it gets up to 5% humidity, and we start complaining when it gets up to (gasp!) 10%.
And bugs! Seriously, how do people function? Little crawling, flying, jumping, stinging, biting things are just everywhere.
It’s unnatural, I tell you.
Oh, and it got down to 60 degrees one night. Like, holy shit. It’s September. Why is it 60 degrees in September? That’s like, Halloween weather. I walked outside and started shivering so hard my arms and legs were hurting. Granted, I was wearing nothing but a tank top and pajama shorts, but it was fucking cold, y’all.
Stop laughing, I’m a desert rat. When you’re collapsing from heat stroke in 120 degrees, and I’m wearing a black T shirt and jeans, and forgetting to turn the a/c on in my car for the first few blocks (actually, I’ve gotten better about that since having the spawn, and having her in the car with me), we’ll have this conversation about tolerating different weather extremes again.
Back in the day, I went years in a car with no a/c, and never cared enough to pay to get it fixed. As long as the heat worked in the winter, I was fine.
I digress. Despite the best efforts of my immediate family, and the fact that the South and I have a mutual hatred for each other (the states, themselves, not the people in the South, don’t misunderstand. There are certain NC residents I am extremely fond of. The state, however, and I just generally don’t like each other. It’s the whole green, humid, bug-infested thing), the trip was great, the spawn has inherited my complete adoration for flying, and tolerated the insane layover and flight delays like a champ, and received all kinds of compliments about how awesome she was, and how it was so refreshing to be seated near a small child on a plane who wasn’t screaming and running in the aisles and kicking the seats and generally just being obnoxious.
Nope, she loved it. She said she wants to be a pilot when she grows up and make lots of dollars. Like, 22 dollars (kids are fucking hilarious, man).
It’s funny, the two days I spent on planes and in airports were nicer than the days I spent with my psychotic mother and sociopathic sister.
Of course, the one down side of flying is that it’s that enclosed space, that recycled air. So the spawn has a horrific runny nose (which admittedly could be allergies, it is fall, after all), and I’ve been battling a sore throat and a headache from hell, that occasionally gets so bad, I just have to close my eyes and sit super still for five or ten minutes, until the wave of nausea passes.
And that’s happened before, I’ve gotten sick from flying before. It’s just one of those things. I’ll live. This is the first that I’ve been able to sit at an actual computer screen, rather than my phone. I’ve got a ton of things I need to do, emails to write (If you’re waiting for an email from me, I haven’t forgotten you, I promise!), but it’s difficult to do from my phone, and the computer screen has the tendency to make my headache worse, so it’s all just going to get done when it gets done.
Oh, but my car is finally fixed (yay!). Two and a half weeks in the shop, and $700, and it’s finally fixed (I fucking hope).
Oh!! But I just found out that Dodge makes a Charger SRT Hellcat.
For those who don’t know me that well, I adore sports cars, and the Dodge Challenger is, by far, my favorite. The thing just looks like a beast, and it’s fucking fast. I’ve driven a Mustang, a Corvette, and a 350Z. I’ve never had the chance to drive a Challenger, probably because the Universe knows I would most likely just never give it back to whoever owned it. I saw, today, a sexy red Challenger parked in an empty lot on Rainbow and Warm Springs-ish, with a “For Sale” sign, and I swear it took every ounce of willpower I possess to keep driving, and not write the number down and make a phone call right then and there.
But owning one was never something I thought seriously about, because they’re two-door, and even with the ones that do have a backseat, it’s put in as an after-thought. It was never really something I thought seriously about, because it never suited my needs.
Until I found out that in 2015, they made a Charger Hellcat, which is exactly like the Challenger Hellcat (which is the nicest/strongest/fastest Challenger model you can get), except it’s a fucking sedan. 707 horsepower. 204 miles per hour. Faster than the fucking Challenger, despite being 120 pounds heavier (apparently the longer body of the Charger makes it more aerodynamic).
And it’s a wonderful family car.
I. MUST. HAVE. IT.
It’s only available with an automatic transmission, which is slightly disappointing, but you can adjust and customize when and how the engine shifts to almost ridiculous degrees, as well as limiting the car’s output if you so desire (they call it “valet mode,” which is just fucking awesome), so I can tolerate the automatic. It gives it just a little less of a “sports car” feel, but oh darn, I guess I’ll just have to deal. It also has the same red key/black key system as the Challenger, so that’s cool, too (black key in the ignition puts the car at full power, while the red limits it to only 500 hp).
So that’s going to be my next car. And now I can’t wait for my current one to die (which, unfortunately, probably isn’t going to happen anytime soon. It’s got like 103k miles on it, but I take really good care of it, so it’s still in good condition, other than the issue with the transmission. And occasionally driving it like it’s a Challenger Hellcat).
But anyway, I’m glad to be home, I’m happy to be where it’s hot and dry, and while I might miss one or two people living there, I certainly don’t miss the South. I’m not going to miss this damn headache when it finally goes away, either.