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We walked off of the plane and into the jetway that connects to the terminal, and immediately we could feel the warm, damp, used air like a wet wool blanket. Yes, we remember this. Dallas, Texas. It was a far cry from the weather at the start of our journey. We left our home in Circle, Alaska on Friday morning at about 9AM, after not nearly enough sleep. It was 30 degrees below zero out, and so I had added to our stockpile of those extra things we take “just in case.” We drove the wilderness road to Fairbanks luckily without incident.
Well, without major incident. Jacob had a relapse of carsickness on the way. There are some pretty curvy sections, and as we drove I was thinking that this road is a driver’s dream. It has curves, slopes, beautiful scenery, no law enforcement, and is so lightly populated that there is virtually no need to stay on the right side of the road. Of course I don’t take full advantage of those traits since I’m traveling with the family. Still, during a relatively calm stretch, Jacob gave out a sharp cry causing us to look back at him, and once he had our full attention, up it all came. And so we used that emergency change of clothes only 2 hours into our 24 hour trip.

For travel through the airport terminal, we made a great little rig for Jacob’s car seat. We simply strapped his seat to a collapsible dolly and drug him through the airport. It was perfect.

Going through security is for me the most stressful parts of air travel. There should be a special dispensation for parents traveling with small children. Stephanie went through with Toby, and Jacob was my responsibility. Having separated my backpack, my laptop, my camera box, the collapsible dolly, our shoes, our 1 quart baggie of 3 oz. liquids and Jacob’s car seat, the TSA agent saw Jacob holding Bear and said to me, “Sir, we have to take the doll too.” Nice. Even the people in line behind me were scoffing at the agents for taking the boy’s bear. Sure enough, tears. But we got through it quickly and Jacob and Bear both got TSA stickers declaring them screened and found benign.

We shared both legs of our flight with dozens of military personnel either heading home for Christmas leave or returning to duty after enjoying a few weeks of down time. It was good to see them and to have the flight crew recognize them with a round of applause by the passengers.

It was a long flight, but really, it went as well as it possibly could have. Jacob and Toby both slept beautifully throughout both legs of the flight with minimal fussing and crying.

We were met at the airport by my mom Liz, my dad Norman, his wife Melodi, and Stephanie’s mom, Kathy. We all walked out into the blinding sun (we haven’t really seen the sun since sometime in October) and loaded up the cars. Norman took this opportunity to point out his yuletide bumper sticker: “Thank God the Virgin Mary didn’t have an abortion. Merry Christmas!” A divisive and inflammatory message for the holidays.

And now I am sitting on Julius’ back porch enjoying the shade and the breeze. I can hear the tinkling water of his backyard koi ponds, the faint hum of the highway, and the periodic crescendo/decrescendo of cars passing down the street. Both boys are sleeping and Stephanie and Jan are talking and sharing lunch. When I’m done with this, I’ll reach for a book and a beverage and retain this comfy spot on the swing. It’s definitely good to be home in Rockwall.

Posted on Monday, December 18, 2006 at 01:22PM by Registered CommenterBrian Rozell | Comments1 Comment

Reader Comments (1)

hey!!!! If you are still in town, call me. I would love tp see everyone. we live about 30 min. from rockwall. hope to hear from you. 903-288-2142 reigan
December 20, 2006 | Unregistered Commenterreigan

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