Well Folks, this vacation has taken control of itself and I am subject to the adventures of inconvenience. Yes, it has been an adventure. When I was driving to the Milwaukee airport I had an unsettled feeling. I was exhausted, I was afraid I’d miss my flight, and I was nervous to make all of my connections. I noticed that I was driving with both hands tightly gripping the steering wheel, sitting stiffly upright and speeding 15 miles over the limit. At that point I reminded myself that nothing was in my control and I needed to enjoy every second of this time away from home, regardless of what happens. I arrived at the airport to find that my flight had been delayed 45 minutes.
This is where it all begins. With high hopes, fingers and toes crossed, and a good book to read, I boarded the plane. I made it to O’Hare with 14 minutes to run across 3 terminals to catch my connection to Seattle. I just about collapsed at the departure screen to realize that this flight had also been delayed 2 hours. “Delayed” is a word that I’m becoming quite familiar with. At this point I was pretty sure that my itinerary was void. Thanks to my sister who helped me with some over-the-phone research I gathered together the best alternatives.
I arrived in Seattle with no connection. The airlines booked me on a Sunday afternoon flight to Juneau and left me with 2 days to wait around in Seattle. I am thankful that I have so many good friends there. I called Ruth and said, “Wanna hang out?” That was a treat indeed. I arrived at the Salin’s home with a special note on the refrigerator “Welcome Home April!”
How blessed I am to have family in so many places on the globe! How wonderful it is to not only have a bed to sleep in, but a loving embrace, a kiss on the cheek, and inspiring hospitality! I am thankful for them. Rita, Joe, Ruth and Amy, if you’re reading this, THANK YOU!
Saturday morning I awoke to a pancake breakfast, coffee and a few hours of conversation with Mama Rita. It was meaningful and helpful. It is good for me to learn from other people and to take their words to heart. Later on Saturday Ruth and I went to church and I was able to see my good good friend Paul. It was fun to walk up to him and just stand there, waiting for the shock to appear on his face. It was quite a reaction. After church we spent time chatting about life, faith, hopes and how we desire to embody the things we think and feel. My friends are amazing. This network that lives on is only strengthening as we get older. It is hard to be separated by states and seas and country borders and visa rules but when we do connect, when we do embrace each other, it is the most vivid reminder that we are not alone in this world even when we feel like it. That night the sunset was beautiful!
This morning Ruth and I walked through Pikes Place Market, bought some coffee and pastries...
and I was left at the airport to catch my 2:10 flight to Juneau. Well...that’s what I thought anyways. At the ticket counter I was informed that I had mistakenly been booked on tomorrow’s flight. Here we go again…what should I do now? Delayed once again in the Seattle airport I called a few friends in the area but Sunday noon-time usually has people occupied with church or family affairs. I am booked for tonight’s flight to Juneau which is one step closer to being in Haines. I will sleep the night in the Juneau airport and catch a cab in the morning to the 7:00am ferry to Haines where I will finally be with Vanessa and Ryan. This is my hope. I’m hoping. I'm hoping. I'm hoping.
In between songs he was protesting that this in fact is NOT the original Starbucks and that we are only told that because of a legal loop hole. Apparently the real original Starbucks was torn/burned down and the company transferred the original business agreement to this location and that this gave Starbucks the legal ability to say it was the original one. He was quite angry about this and I laughed when he was trying to share his bitterness with a sweet 5 year old girl who stood listening to him with a confused look on her face. Also while in the city this morning I saw an older homeless woman standing with a big fluffy poufy silver wig on and she was carrying a large stuffed teddy bear and pulling a rolling suitcase. She walked past people saying “That’s right! That’s right! That’s right!”