So, four titanium screws in my jaw and two tattoos later, I’m home.

They had some sort of international sports event in Bangkok that ended today, the 24th Universiade, whatever that is. So at the airport today, I ended up on an immigration line that was reserved just for athletes leaving the country. When you walked in to the immigration area, the line was marked with a stand-up cardboard rabbit holding a torch. I’m supposed to know what the fuck that means? There was no sign over the counter saying “athletes only” but when I got to the front of the line, the guy told me I had to go to another line. I said to him, there’s no sign, there’s nothing posted, I waited on this line for 15 minutes already, can’t you just stamp my passport? What does a bunny holding a fucking torch mean? The guy wouldn’t budge. I asked him for his name and he refused to give it to me. I was about to start screaming curses at him when I realized that the only result of that would be that I’d end up in the Bangkok Hilton, and I had no choice but to back down to this typical low life bureaucrat who was happy to have some authority for 5 minutes in his sad little life.

Now, when I fly Cathay, if economy is full, I generally get a free upgrade to business class. When I handed my boarding pass at the counter, they didn’t run it through the machine, didn’t check the list, and I figured okay, the flight’s not full, it is what it is.

And when I got on the plane, it seemed like everyone had come on and that I was going to have my entire row empty and I thought, great, I can stretch out for the flight. And then another crush of people came on and the two seats next to me were taken. As I stood up to let the couple take their seats, I noticed in the row behind me a cute girl in tank top and shorts, sitting by herself. I figured, okay, once the doors are closed, I’ll switch to that seat, one empty seat between us, I can stretch my legs if nothing else.

But people continued to come on board. The airplane was getting very full. And then the stewardess showed someone to my seat. Yes indeed, both of our boarding passes said 47C. She took my pass and went off. I knew that someone was getting an upgrade, but would it be me or that guy? I waited, trying not to let anticipation or hope build too much. She came back and yes, sure enough, told me I’d been upgraded. I smiled and said, I can live with that, gathered my stuff and settled into business class for the flight home.

And I’m really happy to be home, even though I’m always somewhat sad to depart Bangkok. This month, several chapters of my life closed, some new chapters have possibly been started, I’m anxious to see what comes next.