An enjoyable flight; I had a good sleep, read the whole of The Guardian (a pleasure I will only have on-line for the foreseeable future), watched about four episodes of Everybody Loves Raymond and read a little of Terence Mournet's Oral Tradition and Literary Dependency, which I am reviewing for JTS. We touched down at 4.20 pm, picked up our hired car, drove to our cheap hotel and had a nice meal at a place just around the corner called Perkins. I would guess that this is some kind of chain, but the food was good and it was remarkable value (half what we would pay in the UK) and friendly service. No beer, unfortunately, but it was good to taste my first root beer since arriving, with free refills, an American tradition I am going to enjoy. The kids are now in bed and so Viola and I both have a little computer time, so out comes the blogging machine.
I have found my camera so should be able to make some picture observations soon too. Some useful lessons on how to live in America have already been learnt, and we have only been here a few hours. First, a friendly fellow at the airport piled all our bags onto the shuttle that was to take us to the rental car place. I remembered that in the US you are supposed to tip everyone, so I took a stab and gave him $1.75, feeling very generous. A friendly lady from Miami explained to us on the bus that the going rate would be $1 a bag, so the ideal would have been $5 or more for our huge, heavy bags. Second, I have discovered that you cannot use the word "double", e.g. when spelling "Goodacre", "G, double o, d, a, c, r, e" etc., or "double 9" for 99 in a phone number and so on. Third, don't believe anything you are told on an internet site about a hotel you have booked into, even if you have it in writing. The kind of room we had reserved turned out not even to exist. But we don't know yet how long we will be living in this odd, interim state. We have had an offer accepted on a house here, and aim to close in mid October. In the mean time, I have a job to begin, and I go in to Duke first thing in the morning. My first class, though, will be next Monday, so I have a couple of days plus a weekend breathing space to do start doing all the other big things that need doing, social security number, school for the kids, bank, mortgage, car and more.
My clock is showing 3.04 am, so I suppose I had better get that adjusted back to 10.04 am, which sounds a whole lot more civilized.