After finally hitting the sack here a little after 5 a.m. local time -- we’re Central time zone (Vegas plus 2 hrs.) -- I successfully woke up in time to hit the breakfast buffet before it closed. (Saw a couple of PokerStars shirts there, yes I did.) Am now conscious and caffeinated, ready to see where this here Peruvian adventure goes.
All went smoothly yesterday until Houston, where I got a text message from my blogging partner over here, Brad “Otis” Willis, that his flight from Atlanta had been delayed. We were all systems go, I fired back excitedly. Then came word there’d be a 20-minute delay. Then, 20 minutes later, we learned the plane sitting outside our gate wasn’t going to cut it, and so we had to wait for another big jumbo jet to come from Tampa to use. Total delay -- about six hours.
Eventually I'd hear back from Otis that he was on his way, having been bumped up to business. Happens sometimes. You get short-stacked, then you get aces.
I spent the afternoon using the $8 meal voucher they gave us to buy two-thirds of a meal, then, already too fatigued to do much else, I hopped on Twitter (@hardboiledpoker) to follow the conversations about Day 4 of the World Series of Poker.
In an effort to try to keep my spirits up, I decided to do a little live reporting from the terminal:
hardboiledpoker: significant delay in Houston for Lima flight... “Houston, we have a cliche...”Might’ve gotten further carried away with the silliness, if I weren’t so friggin’ tired. Was going on less than three hours sleep following those first couple of days reporting from the World Series of Poker, Event No. 3 ($1,000 no-limit hold’em).
hardboiledpoker: well, delay in Houston will be several hours as we wait for new plane... It’s cool -- I can report chip counts from here in the terminal...
hardboiledpoker: everyone here currently still right around their starting stacks
hardboiledpoker: @tripjax several empty chairs here already; parents of crybaby have been patient, soon may be forced to act #livereportingfromhoustonairport
hardboiledpoker: very slow structure here means many content to sit back & wait #livereportingfromhoustonairport http://tweetphoto.com/24980496
hardboiledpoker: this player has been card dead for a while now #livereportingfromhoustonairport http://tweetphoto.com/24991014
hardboiledpoker: I think we’ve reached the departure bubble; thanks for following our coverage #livereportingfromhoustonairport
Was really feeling fine, though, despite everything. That is until an airport employee started coming around asking everyone to fill out what looked like 12- or even 16-page surveys full of questions soliciting opinions about the George Bush International Airport. Seemed like the timing there was a little suspect, given we’d all been sitting around for six-plus hours like that.
When I said no, I would not like to answer any questions, the fellow responded by asking me a question: “Why not?” I gave him the you-have-got-to-be-kidding-me look. Then I said something about being too tired. Then he said something else, but I wasn’t listening. Was in danger of tilting there for a moment, but I got over it quickly enough. I’d been dealt a “So It Goes Hand,” and so just had to endure.
The flight was not exactly ideal, either. I ended up in the very back row, wedged between a couple of burly fellows with whom I would eventually engage in ongoing, non-verbal dialogues about our differing views of personal space for much of the trip. Louder’n hell back there, too, but my new headphones helped with that some.
Landed and made it through customs without much fuss. Got a taxi, and though it was still dark the trip from the airport to the hotel afforded some interesting sights.
Today there are a couple of super satellites for the Main Event, but no reporting as yet. For us the day will be taken up with a bit of preparing, plus finding that pre-tourney party we have been hearing about this evening. Then tomorrow the Main Event gets underway at noon local time. Looks like the plan is for four days of play, with the final table coming on June 5.
I know a few pros who were in Vegas are making the trip down for this one, and there will be some other media here, too, taking this here one-week side road from the WSOP this summer. Will let you know who all is here, and whatever else happens down here on the west coast of South America over the next few days. And I’ll point you also to the PokerStars blog once our reporting begins in earnest.
Meanwhile, gonna go see about finding me a little bit o’ sol.