Heading west…

Free wifi at the Tulsa airport!  Thank you, airport.  While I don’t expect to get wifi for free, I sincerely appreciate it when it’s supplied.

So, for the 3rd year running, I’m taking a summer trip to parts unknown.  This tradition has evolved marvelously from a solo trip 2 years ago, to the Grand Colorado Adventure last summer.  This year, I have two legs of the trip; one with my brother, and one with the same friend who conquered Rocky Mountain National Park with me last summer.  We are Seattle, Portland and Vancouver BC bound.

As is usually the case in the day of my vacation commencement, I feel a tremendous relief that the vacation is finally, finally here.  It’s been another busy year.  Let’s just leave it at that.

This years adventure to the Pacific Northwest hasn’t really begun yet, so I figured it might be fun to reflect on some of the funnier or awesomer moments leading up to my sitting here in this clean, wifi-providing airpot.

First, shopping.  Or, weather.  They combine in a strange way.  See, it’s going to be 65-78 degrees on this trip.  Having lived in 100+ heat for the past month (I exaggerate, but you get the point), I find I’ve forgotten what one wears in temperatures like that.  Turns out jeans, layers and a fleece jacket for chilly mornings are a good bet.  But here’s the issue; fleece jackets are scarce in Arkansas in the summer.  And here’s a tip for retail clerks everywhere.  I know you’re supposed to be chatty and supportive when you check me out, but I don’t need you to comment on the comfort level of the underwear I’m buying.  Really, it’s ok.  You can just take my credit card and call it done.

Second, logistics.  Good grief.  There are so many things to NOT forget on a trip like this, most importantly your passport.  But travel life will also suck without headphones, contact lens solution and the various cords needed to keep electronics functioning.  And don’t even get me started on the incomprehensibility of the AT&T international roaming charges rules.  Seriously, AT&T…why do you have to suck so much?

Third, dog care.  As you’ve heard before, I’m blessed in my canine support system.  My friends The Kellamses willingly take my pooch for extended periods when I travel, and I just love knowing she’s hanging out with her dog friends and humans who love her.  Strangely, however, she’s spent more time with these friends of mine than I have, so it was really, really nice to finally be able to sit and have a beer with them last night when I dropped Sadie off.  My favorite moment had to be when we all had to troop inside to listen to an Avett Brothers song, and we all sat quietly, dogs included, listening to the song.  It’s comforting to me, that ritual.  No matter what friend group I’ve been in, we’ve always been able to just sit and listen to a good song.  It’s nice.  Simple, peaceful and nice.

So here I sit quietly in this lovely airport, feeling my neck muscles begin to loosen at the thought o turning off my work email, while my brother, alas, connects on three flights due to some screw up with the airlines.  Sorry, Pete!  Hopefully we will both arrive in Seattle in time to drop our stuff, grab some sushi, and go watch the Red Sox.  It might be raining.  I am completely excited by that (provided the game doesn’t get rained out).

More to come.  Thanks for coming along on this journey.

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