Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Long weekend

We left the girls with some friends over the weekend while we flew out to Utah for Scott's grandpa's funeral. I was so, so nervous to leave them — I'd never left Sarah overnight before, and had only left Beth twice (and not to go so far away, either). We've been here for, what, seven months? and just don't know anyone all that well. I spent most of last week waking up in the middle of the night and worrying. What about, I'm not really sure — they're sweet kids, they're resilient, our friends are delightful and attentive people (and were probably better parents over the weekend than I usually am), and we were only going to be gone for three days/two nights. I guess I was just worried about anything I couldn't think about. (Well, that, and the fact that I'm a worrywart. But that's beside the point.)

We dropped them off at my friend Mindy's house Friday morning at what my sister terms "the butt crack of dawn," still in their PJs, the two of us intending to drive to the airport and park in the economy lot. And then we had the brilliant idea: We're close to the Alewife station! What if we park there, and take the T to the airport, and save ourselves a lot of money in parking fees? And we figured, hey, we had enough time, since we weren't checking luggage and all.

So we drove to Alewife, found a parking place, zipped downstairs and got on the train, thinking, oh, how cool are we, and then somewhere in Cambridge we ended up sitting at a station for 20 minutes while they kept making announcements about how we were going to be delayed for just a minute more, and they were making a quick schedule adjustment, and we'd be on our way momentarily, and we started to think, maybe this was a bad idea. Then we got on the wrong Silver Line bus out of South Station (correctable: we just got off a few stops down and waited for the right one, but still harrowing) and by the time we got to the airport and made it through the United check-in line, the touch screen told us we were too late to check in.


The agents we talked to tried to get us on a later flight (all full, and they wouldn't get us there in time anyway), couldn't override the system to get us on the right flight, and finally routed us to the check-in supervisor. Somewhere along the line our explanation of "grandfather's funeral" was misinterpreted by someone, and the supervisor heard "father's funeral." (We were not about to correct her.) She overrode the system, printed us boarding passes, pushed us to the front of the security line, told us to run down the concourse, turn left, and if we made it to the plane before they shut the doors we could go. Which we did, just as they were announcing the final boarding call. Oof. Lesson learned: We can take the T, but only if we give ourselves a lot of extra time.

The funeral was actually great — all of Scott's cousins were there (even one who works on a cruise ship and flew in from New Zealand), I got to hold a bunch of cute babies, his aunts told terrifically funny stories about their dad teasing them and hoarding plywood, his grandfather was buried with full military honors (two of the men in the honor guard had served in WWII, when he served) and we were really, really glad we got to go. My parents gave us a place to stay, were thrilled to see us for the approximately five hours we were in the house and not sleeping (there were waffles involved) and sent us home with Easter goodies for the kids.

As for the girls, I shouldn't have worried. Each time I called Beth was slightly dismissive on the phone: "Hi Mommy! We're playing." She'd answer a few questions and then give the phone back to a nearby adult. Our friends Brent and Danika, who'd picked them up from Mindy's house Friday evening, had dinner waiting for us when we got home and seemed relatively unscathed by what must have been a looooong weekend. Sarah's given us lots of hugs, and Beth had a few tantrums yesterday as part of her winding-down process, but all's well.

1 comment:

Jessie said...

Wow, I hate when that happens- you depend on public transportation and then they don't deliver.

Seriously, I think it will drive me to therapy. lol.

How wonderful that you were able to honor Scott's grandfather with the rest of the family!