Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Travel Stuff: 5/12- 5/15

Stayed at the Cathedral Hill Hotel in San Francisco Sunday and Monday nights. There's often some sort of group having meetings or conventions there. This group was probably one of the more odd ones we've seen so far. They were having a big brouhah at the hotel the last few days.

At least I think that's the group. Their web page, unless I missed it, didn't mention any meeting in San Francisco.

About the only problem with them was they really cluttered up the hotel. They were EVERYWHERE.
I was hoping the hotel had their ATT Wifi up and running again. Last time we were there it wasn't working and you had to fight for space in their business center to go online with the hard line DSL. When we got there, I asked about it. The guy said it was up and running.

Went to our room. It was on the 8th floor this time. First time we'd been stuck on the top floor. No big deal, thanks to elevators, except the elevators are slowest to the 8th. Since there's no floors above you, you can't catch a ride as it's coming and going. You have to wait for it to go all the way to the 8th.

The guy was right, or so it seemed. Connected right away with ATT. That was pleasant, especially after the fiasco the last time we were there. It wouldn't last.

Got up next morning to check the e-mail and do my internet stuff. Couldn't connect. I tried for probably half and hour. I'd get connected, then get disconnected. I couldn't connect, then I could. Then the connection would slowly get weaker and weaker until I'd get discoed again. It almost seemed like what happened last time but the messages I was getting were more varied.

I wondered if the 8th floor was too far from the signal?

Eventually I went down to the front desk and asked the gal at the counter if anyone else had reported problems. She was one of those chinese(?) types that, whether they understood me or not, I had a hard time understanding her.

She didn't seem to understand exactly what I was saying, giving me a card from ATT that explained how to connect to the wireless network. I tried to explain that I knew how to, and had connected before, but it just wasn't working. Eventually she seemed to understand. Either that or she was brushing me off. She told me to come back at 9am'ish and see the Front Desk Manager.

Didn't have time to see the manager guy at 9am as we were heading to UCSF. When we got back, the front desk was real busy so I didn't bother then.

I had the distance thing in the back of my mind so I grabbed the laptop and went down to the lobby. All the Sound Healing people were taking the seats with tables but I found one fairly comfy chair and just set the laptop where I suppose it's supposed to be: my lap.

I got connected but had a bit of a hassle logging in for some reason. It did seem the 8th floor was too far away to get the signal reliably.

By the time I'd checked my e- mail the front desk had gotten a bit less busy. I went to one of the guys behind the counter and asked him if anyone else had problems with wifi on the 8th floor. He responded along the lines of wifi being unreliable for a number of reasons and he doesn't even use it at home.

Wasn't exactly what I asked, but he continued and said they'd loan me an ethernet cable. I told him I'd brought my own and asked if that dsl plug on the bedside table was where you hooked up. Yep. Did it cost anything extra? Nope.

Cool. I wondered what that thing was. It looked like a DSL plug but had a label that said Wayport on it. I'd always figured it was an additional DSL service you had to pay for, the label being on there and all. Apparently not.

I went upstairs, plugged into it and I was good to go.

The only problem was location. The plug was across the room from the desk. My cable was only seven or so feet long. I'd have to use the computer either on the bedside table, the bed, or the floor. Not enough room on the table. Eventually, I settled for the bed. A bit uncomfortable, but I could deal with it.

Next time I'll have to be bold and ask for a room anywhere but the 8th floor.
Eating in the car is so lame. Why do I always do it?

We'd bought a couple sandwiches at Quizno's in Cloverdale for lunch. We decided to eat about the time we got to Leggett, mostly because the time was right. We stopped at the Leggett rest stop for a pee break and broke the sandwiches out as we left. We should have eaten and then left.

No problem for Connie, but for me quite a hassle. To their credit, Quizno's really stuffs their sandwiches full. First half of mine wasn't too much of a problem. Second half made quite a mess. So we're getting on the freeway and I'm trying to keep the contents of the sandwich from falling out while negotiating curves at high speeds.

Finally I put the second half on my lap and waited until we got on a straighter section of road. That didn't help much, either. I ended up dropping a big blob of mayonnaise or something on the steering wheel. I grab a napkin to wipe it up and it just smears it all over the wheel. The whole left side of the wheel is all slippery now. That sucked.

Eventually I wolfed the sandwich down and then went back to trying to clean the steering wheel. Napkins wouldn't clean it up. Finally I asked Connie for one of her hand wipe thingies- those moist napkin things you use when you don't have water available for handwashing. They cleaned it up first try. Love those things.
Got home a little after 2pm, taking a bit longer to get home than usual, or so it seemed. Nothing had changed in Eureka since we'd left.


At 9:32 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Where is the leggett rest stop Fred? We always stop and pee at the south leggett exit- didn't know there was another option.

At 9:42 AM, Blogger Fred said...

It's south of the south Leggett exit, I believe, by a mile or two. Between the Bell Springs Road turnoff and South Leggett. It's off the north bound lane to the right.

If you remember that kinda conical shaped building on the right side of the road a ways past Bell Springs road, it's just a bit after that. There's one of those blue and white signs about 1000 ft before it to let you know it's there. It still kind of surprises you as you round a corner and there it is.

It would probably be unsafe to try and turn into it from the southbound lane as you'd have to cross freeway traffic and the angle of the turn off would be real sharp (we did it once, though, first time we went to UCSF).

Water there is not potable so be advised not to drink it. Ok for everything else, though.

At 10:00 AM, Blogger Carol said...

I enjoy reading your travelogue, Fred. I love those handy wipes, too. Usually I buy baby wipes, because they are mild. Use them when the dog comes inside to clean him up.

At 12:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

At 1:49 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Boring... could you at least add an antidote about you crossing the double yellow line and the rush you felt doing it?


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