Well, almost. The Berryhills packed up and said goodbye to the crew 2 days early. We needed to leave on Saturday morning so we could get back to Santiago on Sunday night so Joe could leave the following Monday morning for Panama for a big week-long meeting. Nothing like a little air travel! We shed some tears...shared big hugs...waved and yelled goodbye as we drove away.
It was a wonderful trip.
And then at the airport there was a lot of waiting... and then confusion from the workers behind the check-in desk.
I have a total love-hate relationship with electronic devices. Times like these I LOVE THEM WITH EVERY SINGLE FIBER in this body of mine.
The airline cancelled our flight without any notice. They wouldn't be able to get us out until Sunday night which wouldn't put us onto Chilean soil until Tuesday. Joe would completely miss his huge meeting. There was a lot of confusion and trying to figure out if Joe could jump on a plane that very moment, he might be able to make it-- but that would leave me with the 3 kids and 12 bags of luggage that I wasn't planning on handling alone this time around. (I know. 12 bags. It's excessive, but we stock up EVERY TIME we get on US soil. It's par for the course.) We started shoving clothes and items from this suitcase to that one so Joe would have clothes the things he'd need to travel. It was madness. That shower I took before we left the hotel? Worthless. Sweat was everywhere. The airline started throwing a ticket together for Joe and we were trying to see who had the keys to the house and you know, important details we weren't planning on dealing with.
"Do I have the car keys? You take the cereal, it's lighter. What about these training wheels?" I'm not kidding. When I sliced my finger trying to shove things from one suitcase to the next and blood was now evident, I'm sure the long line of people behind us were in awe of this spectacle.
Suddenly, Joe looked at the guy behind the counter and said, "I'm sorry. I'm not going. I'm flying home with my family." But you'll miss Panama's meeting!!! He didn't care. I almost burst into tears.
Sometimes life is pure bliss...
you've caught the perfect ride...
and then in an instant it all changes and you are gasping for air, wondering how you went from hanging 10 to being thrown under the water.
We surprised a lot of faces when we showed up at the hotel that afternoon again.
I'll tell you what. I'm grateful for the highs and those lows. They make this life one heck of a story. And you know? Saying goodbye again a day and a half later wasn't quite as teary--we were all smiles, grateful for the unexpected bonus hours.
We don't have to talk about the rerouted flight home with all of us in single seats where a lady reading her Bible wouldn't give up her seat so our 3 year old wouldn't have to sit by himself all of the way from Kauai to Phoenix to New York City to Santiago. Yep... let's not talk about that. That trip home was long and rough. (Don't fret...we were able to find some extremely generous people despite the Christian lady who wasn't acting very Christ-like.) Let's just remember the good stuff.