Everything turns into a race. It always does…
Tha Queebs and I received our mission parameters from Dr. Birdrito. We were to accompany Agent Getz to South East Asia, meet up with McBurger, and gather intel in the regions of Thailand, Cambodia, Vietnam, Laos and Burma. Simple enough. Scope the scene counter-clockwise around SEA. We’re on the case!
Our first objective, as per usual, was to catch a ride to the train to the plane. We were to take the last train into Los Angeles for the evening and hop a flight to Taipei. With 25 minutes to catch the final train at 7:50, Agent Getz arrived with our mission chauffeur, Field Operative Weemily (also known amicably as FOW around The Agency. This is pronounced OW! with an F, like when somebody is playing punch buggy with you and you don’t know it until they see one).
We piled our gear in FOW’s conservatively sporty white Subaru Impreza and hit the streets.
Minutes later we were stuck on the freeway behind a fresh new car accident. Not moving an inch, watching the clock tick down to a now impossible to catch train, the last one of the night. In keeping with tradition we were already totally fucked.
Of course it had to begin this way..
Agent Getz is rubbing his fingers frantically through his hair, “What the fuck! Can we get off here? See if we can get off here.” His phone’s in his hands, he’s looking up alternate routes. FOW’s speakers are softly playing ethereal electronic icy bloops and blips adding a somewhat humorous backdrop to the new stress of our fuckedness. I’m actually laughing. “Well there’s no way we’re making the train in San Bernadino, what are the other stops?”
iPhone out, Tha Queebs is on it, “Fontana, Rialto, Rancho Cucamonga..”, “Rancho, let’s do it. We’ll race the train to Rancho!” And so we race the train to Rancho.
FOW ditches the exit attempt and pulls back on the highway. She floors it up to 95+ and we’re zig-basting up the 215 to the 210. “I suppose we could get pulled over..”, “Floor it”, “The train leaves Rancho at 8:10” offers Queebs, Getz comes back with “Directions say we’ll get there at 8:06!”
We merge onto the 210 and take the exit for Rancho. It’s looking good.. until we hit every fucking red light Rancho has to offer. The situation is comical at this point. We’ve pretty much resigned ourselves to the fact that we’ll be renting a car from the Ontario airport now, racing to catch our flight. “Another fucking red convertible mustang probably.”
We’re in unknown territory, none of us have been to this station before. “Here, here, here”, FOW pulls a hard right into the station area, “Where now?” No idea. WTF? “There, there, there.”
We hop out on the curb and offer some FOW hugs, “Thanks for the lift, well done”, and we hustle up to the kiosk during the announcement of the trains arrival. Frantic button pushing and we secure our tickets.. with a couple minutes to spare. We did it. Our first minor accomplishment. “I need a drink”
After this initial adrenaline boost, we settle in on the train and immediatly bust out the cards to continue our International Crazy Eights Countdown Tournament. Having misplaced our standard Machu Picchu deck, Agent Getz busts out his communist era Chairman Mao cards we’d gotten last trip in Hong Kong.
Tha Queebs has never played so we include her and teach her the rules. The game lasted perfectly all the way to LA, winding down just as the train was pulling in to Union Station. Beginner’s Luck brought Queenie in as the victor (we’ll see how long that lasts).
We nab the Flyaway bus from Union Station into LAX and get dropped at Thomas Bradley. Just off the bus and Queenie sees Jamie’s face light up like a Jack-o-lantern, “Oh, what’s happening?” He just points. Another bus has arrived at the airport dropping off a gaggle of EVA airline stewardesses. It’s a 20 deep parade of green cutie cute cuteness. One of them accidentally launches a hairspray bottle out of her open purse. I grab it mid-roll on the concrete and hand it back to her. All smiles “Shea shea”. The three of us collectively melt into the sidewalk.
Fairly uneventful check in and security line and we’re in the food court at Umami Burger chowing manly fries and Golden Road IPAs. It’s finally starting to set in. Massive Adventure #3 was underway!
We get to the gate and it’s already loading. Agent Getz is in the zone ahead of us and takes off to board. Tha Queebs offers a prayer to SaChirX (God of traveling and favor shields), “Hello Kitty flight, Hello Kitty flight…” As is my experience dealing with most deities, SaChriX can be a fickle bitch and often times gleans pleasure from our misfortune. When we round the corner, not only is it not a Hello Kitty flight, but Drisdelle, instead of already being on board, is mid conversation with some sort of manager type. He seems a little stressed. Gun finger straight at me, “Did you get my text?”, “Nope”. I open it up. It reads “Bit of a pickle. We need proof that we’re leaving Thailand.”
And everybody boards the plane but us.