The weekend at my son’s flew by all too quickly. The highlight of the weekend, and of my entire visit to Winnipeg, was spending Mother’s Day with Kyle. I am so glad that I listened to that gut feeling I had back in November and booked a flight to Winnipeg. But goodbyes are harder each time as I have no idea when we’ll see each other again.
Nonetheless, I found myself on an early morning flight to Vancouver on Tuesday. And with the time change I gained two hours. Another short flight to Seattle, and I was on the Wenatchee Valley Shuttle into Peshastin, minutes away from Leavenworth.
My friends are always telling me that they envy the traveling that I do. Yes, it’s enjoyable and even fascinating, but there are times when I wish I could just put roots down somewhere and stop searching for somewhere to settle down.
Flying has become a tedious form of travel. I remember the days when I loved flying, especially the magical moments of taking off and landing. But that was back when two hours wasn’t required to clear security and customs, although the free WiFi does help pass the time.
The first security clearance was in Winnipeg. Long lineups of harried travelers. Laptop needs to go in a separate tray from my backpack and my purse. My state of the art supersonic knees always set off alarm bells, but it’s a small price to pay for being able to walk pain free. Now if only the body scanners were ever up and running at 5:30 am in Winnipeg………
To my delight Starbucks was conveniently located close to my gate. It’s amazing what a jolt of caffeine does to the body so early in the morning. By the time we boarded, I actually felt human again.
I slept through most of that flight and groggily sauntered through the Vancouver airport and stumbled upon a Carl’s Jr. A breakfast sandwich and another coffee soon revived me and I began the long trek to the wing housing the international flights and USA Immigration.
I lost track of the countless times my boarding pass and passport were checked. And then there was an additional security clearance, although I was already in a secured area. This check was a lot more thorough than the on by the Canadians in Winnipeg. Shoes off. Laptop and cell phone to be checked separately. Once again the knees performed their magic. Next was the computerized passport check. And I always manage to chop part of my head off in the photo.
And now it was time for my two favorite questions——–Where’s home? How long will you be in the USA? The answer to the first, according to my son, is that his mother is a nomad and has no real home. My reply to the Immigration officer was that Winnipeg was my home. The answer to the second question is in actuality until the snow flies. My reply to the Immigration Officer was that I’m really not sure, but at least one month.
Thank God there was another Starbuck’s close to my gate, although something a little stronger was definitely in order. But I knew that there was a Mack n Jack with my name on it in Washington. And I was getting closer. Just another short and uneventful flight to Seattle.
I was amazed that my bag was first off at the carousel and headed outside to get some fresh air. The sun was shining and it felt good after all that stale airplane air. But it soon clouded over and the rain began. The ride on the shuttle was rather interesting weatherwise. The rain turned to fog and then to freezing rain and then we drove for miles through a blizzard. Yes…….SNOW and lots of it! But at that altitude it isn’t uncommon. As we got closer to Peshastin, once again it was rain and then tapered off to heavy cloud.
Steve met the shuttle and loaded my bags into his SUV. We went in to Cashmere and had a wonderful dinner. I chose the chicken pot pie, quite suitable for a cool and rainy day, comfort food.
I woke up in Leavenworth this morning and did something rather rare for me. I unpacked my suitcase and my backpack! Maybe it was the brilliant sunshine that inspired me, but I smile because I know that I am finally somewhere that I want to call “home” for a few months.
About ten days ago, I landed in Seattle for the first time in my life. Sea-Tac was quite the busy place for a Saturday night and it took more than an hour until the luggage from my flight finally arrived. The walk to my friend’s vehicle seemed like an eternity and the traffic on the freeways in the city was ridiculous. The drive to Leavenworth did become quite enjoyable once we were out of the city. However I made a silent vow that I didn’t want to return to Seattle anytime soon.
A couple of days afterward, I had a What’s App message from my daughter. She and her husband would be in Seattle the following week en route to Vancouver for a wedding. As they were reluctant to come to Leavenworth, I agreed to meet them in Seattle. Plans were made to meet at the Argosy Boat Cruise.
We left Leavenworth a little before 9:30 and made great time until we got to Seattle. Traffic was bumper to bumper and came to a grinding halt several times due to construction. Then began the attempt at finding parking. A 2 hour limit on the streets nixed the free idea. We wound up in a parking lot a short walk away, at the pricey cost of $36 for 3 hours. When we arrived at the ticket office my daughter was nowhere in sight. Of course it turned out that there were three ticket offices. But we did manage to find each other eventually and bought our tickets for the cruise.
The weather that day had been overcast and quite dreary. Amazingly once we boarded the ferry, the sun came out and was very welcome due to the breeze once we were out on the water. We sat outside on the top deck and enjoyed the spectacular views of the docks and the city. A most informative guide pointed out the various ships, docks and other attractions visible to us on the skyline. Here are a few photos I took:
After the cruise, we headed down the street for a beer. We sat outside and visited for a while. Kimmy and I hadn’t seen each other since her wedding in the Dominican Republic last October. It was just a few hours yesterday, but for me they special memories always in my heart until we see each other again. Love you Kimmy!