The drive from my house to Boston
airport is approximately 2 hours. In an ice storm it becomes 3 ½ hours. We had
to get on the road.
When we finally finished packing, Del picked up one of Bea’s suitcases and
nearly threw it into the ceiling. I ducked down for dramatic effect.
Apparently, it was much lighter than he expected it to be.
“What the heck are you doing?” I asked him like he did it on purpose.
“Is this the suitcase with a suitcase in it?” He asked me like I had set him up.
“No, that is the suitcase with a pillow in it.” I answered like he should have
We didn’t need to do the whole suitcase-in-a-suitcase thing this year; Jet Blue
allows 3-70lb. suitcases per person plus a carry on. We were a group of 4 at
that point and I didn't own that many
suitcases or have a need to travel with THAT much junk, so Bea packed her
Bea has figured out a way to pack her pillow on every trip we have ever taken.
Del never noticed that. This was the first time that she had an exclusive pillow
Del got a little tense over packing a pillow, they have pillows at Pop Century,
he was sure of it. If that wasn’t enough, he knew mousekeeping would bring more.
But when Bea even thought of laying her face someplace that someone else did,
one of her eyes would close, the other would roll up into the back of her head,
her tongue would stick out and she would make some very disturbing gagging
noises. It totally grossed her out.
So to avoid the risk of the girl having some kind of seizure over ‘face to
strange pillow contact’, I have always let her bring her own pillow.
It seemed simpler than medicating her.
We said goodbye to our home and our cat piggy, and stood behind the block of ice
that contained my truck. Del managed to get the doors open, loaded up the
suitcases and we were on our way to the Maine State Turnpike.
Em was feeling better, much better. When Em is feeling good, she never stops
talking. Bea has had enough experience with this and had brought her headset. Em
had nobody to talk to in the backseat, so she kept yelling to Del and I in the
Most of her talk was about how special she was because TinkerKelli,..ahh..bell
had sent HER an exclusive gift. How I
had to drive faster because TinkerKelli..bell was waiting to see her. Na-na-na.
I am sure she would like us to arrive alive, kiddo.
With Em’s endless babbling chatter the miles slowly melted by. I mean seriously
melted. The temperature in Massachusetts was nearly 40 degrees causing my block
of ice to start to break up.
An enormous chunk of ice broke free of my bug guard and smashed into the
I nearly wet my pants for real.
Two very good things came of this. 1) My windshield DIDN'T crack and 2) the
crashing sound scared Em into silence.
Well, for a few minutes anyway.
We got to terminal E of Logan airport and I thought it would be a better plan to
drop the crew and the luggage off and park the truck by myself.
I parked in another city, I am sure of it. It took me forever to find long term
parking then to take the bus back to the terminal. I had taken my xanax while
waiting for the bus.
As the bus pulled up to terminal E, I noticed the crew was nowhere to be found.
It was the last stop on the bus route before going back to the parking lots.
“Terminal E, get off bus.” The bus driver yelled at me.
“This is E? But my family isn’t here. Isn't this where I left them?” I asked
Like he would know that.
“Terminal E! Off bus!” He yelled at me.
Now, I was getting nervous and I shouldn’t have been because I had taken a xanax
and that is what they are for. I got off the bus and went inside the terminal. I
still couldn’t find any of them. Terminal E is the size of a small city and they
could’ve been on any side of it.
½ an hour later, I realized there was an upper level to terminal E. The bus had
dropped me off directly under them.
At least I got some of those walking miles under my belt early.
The crew was a lovely shade of blue when I finally found them.
We didn’t have any problems checking in with Jet Blue which is amazing for us.
We checked our bags and got right onto the plane. On the way down the ramp to
load on the plane, I mentioned to Del we were lucky this year that we didn't
have to wait around inside the terminal. Last year, while we were waiting Em
called 911 from the payphone.
Em spun around and said to me “Look, I didn't think it would work, I didn't have
any cents.” That made Bea bust out in laughter saying, “We know you don’t have
Em was not amused.
From the time I found the crew to the time we were sitting on the plane waiting
for take off was about 20 minutes. If I hadn’t found them when I did, we would
have missed the flight. The flight left 15 minutes early.
I love Jet blue. This is now my favorite airline. The seats are big and
comfortable, the staff is very friendly and they have individual TV sets in the
back of the seats with direct TV. It really decreases your stress level during
take off to be watching Kate and Matt on the Today show.
Ok, maybe it was the xanax.
The Jet Blue staff (I really don’t know what is politically correct to call
them) has a sense of humor. During the safety instructions part when they
discuss oxygen mask they tell you to put your mask on first, then on your child.
If you are traveling with more than one child, pick your favorite.
Funny stuff, I laughed out loud.
That could have been the xanax too.
The seats are in rows of 6. The girls and I were on one side, Del was on the
other side with two empty seats next to him. Once we were in the air and I had
Bea convinced that we would stay in the
air, I took over Dels extra seats.
Is it just me or did anyone else notice that the flights from New England to
Orlando are only about 10 minutes long? I think I snored myself awake once, but
that could have been Del.
Let’s say it was Del.
I woke up just before we landed. I sat up in the seat, looked at the girls and
Del, did a quick head count, jumped and gasped when I had only counted 3 and we
should be 4, then realized nobody had parachuted out of the plane after all , I
had just forgot to count myself.
I had 3 hours of sleep in the last 24. It affects my counting skills.
Or the xanax wore off.
Chris flight from South Carolina was due to land ½ hour before ours. He was
going to meet us at the Jet Blue gate. When we got off our flight, we could not
When I did the head-count that time, I started with myself. I knew we were
missing one. We should’ve been 5 by now.
We wandered and waited, then decided maybe he was down getting his luggage, so
we started off to baggage claim. I wanted to make a quick bathroom stop.
When I came back from the bathroom, I did another head-count starting with
myself. We were 5 now.
Hey, they found him!
There he stood with Em hanging off one of his arms. He was trying to talk to Del
and it was ticking off Em. He turned to look at me and that was it.
I lost it, started crying and hugged him hard.
It took several shakes of his arm to lose Em before he could hug me back.
Em was again, not amused.
The last time I saw Chris, he was walking up the ramp to get on the monorail and
go back to his base. Everyone else standing there saw a man, a man that was
proudly going back to serve his country and make me proud.
I saw my little boy with the bleach blond hair and dimples.
I still see that little boy inside this man.
As badly as I wanted that moment in time to stand still, it didn’t. And we had
places to go and people to meet.
Our luggage was sitting next to the belt when we got to luggage claim. There was
a security guard standing next to it.
Looks like Bea’s pillow got itself into trouble.
I wondered if the person who pulled that suitcase off the belt injured anyone
standing near them when they found it weighed nothing.
Empty suitcases are surprising fun form of entertainment.
The crew rescued Bea’s pillow much to her relief as I went to the Alamo desk.
Kimball had been updating me on a regular base on the dropping car rates. I
learned from her to check them everyday. Thanks to Kimball, I saved a ton of
The very cute little girl behind the desk was fast and efficient. She handed me
my paperwork, tipped her head to the side and wished me a good day. I continued
to stand there.
I never rented a car before; I didn't know what I was supposed to do.
Standing there, staring at the person behind the desk isn’t it.
I considered calling Kimball to ask her what I should do next when the lady
behind the desk asked me if I needed a language interpreter.
Okay, she didn't know I heard her say that.
Even though the sarcasm was directed at me, I thought it was funny.
The girl behind the desk had dealt with people like me before. She pointed
behind me and told me the parking lot was over there.
Um, okay, but how about some keys to something or a description of my new
I continued to stand and stare. It seemed like my only option. I had done it too
long to back out now.
“The keys are in the car…in the parking lot…behind you…go pick out your car in
row 7.” She said very slowly to me.
Did she say ‘pick out your car’? I get to pick what I want to drive? Really? Oh,
I had visions of little black 5 speed convertibles until we arrived at row 7.
Soccer mom caravans all in a row.
Well, that did seem a bit more practical than pilling the crew and the luggage
in the back of that little black 5 speed convertible.
I made sure that we didn't pick out a white one, because my friend Kimball had
rented a white one the last time and lost it at the Animal Kingdom. The problem
for her was all of the vans at the Animal Kingdom were white. I didn't want to
waste a lot of time looking for the van.
What you want in life and what you get are often two different things.
We ended up losing that van a lot. I actually had to make several phone calls to
people to find it.
I’ll get to that later.
I looked over at Em and Bea as Del and Chris loaded the van. They weren’t
looking so good.
“You guys okay?” I asked them. They were both pale and clammy.
“Think we could change our clothes pretty soon?” Bea asked.
They were still dressed for ice storm weather. We were now standing in Florida
weather. In the excitement of everything, I hadn’t noticed how
unfreakingbelievably hot it was.
I almost melted my crew.
Love ya, mean it. Sorry for nearly killing you guys.
We hopped into the van that was not a black 5 speed convertible and pulled out
of the parking garage.
Our journey had finally begun.
Love Ya / Mean It and BadShoe.com Pins
Tony, Delaney, Connor -
Love Ya / Mean It
Robin & Del, Kimball & Bennet (aka Delswife & Scuba Steve, Zurgswife
& Zurg) are
proud to announce two unique limited edition trading pins to
benefit research to help find cures for Juvenile Diabetes and
We love going to Disney World and writing
funny trip reports, after all it is how we became friends.
We care just as much or more about helping these two great causes. All the
profits from pin sales will go to JDRF
and MDA because, well, Robin thought it would be a fun idea.
So if you enjoy the trip reports
please chip in and buy a pin or two. Pins are $10.00 each including shipping and
handling (North America.) Send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org
with how many pins you would like and we will get the pins rolling. The BadShoe.com pins have sold out. Existing orders are being filled but
we can't take anymore BadShoe.com pin orders, sorry. There still Love Ya /
Mean it Pins (there were more to start.)
If you feel inspired click
either MDA or JDRF's logo or both and make additional contributions.