This Week in a Five-Item List

On Monday, we laid Grandma to rest after a service that paid great tribute to her life and character. The surrounding circumstances have left me feeling uncreative and exhausted, but make for some decent stories, so that’s what I’m going to tell you about for this week’s installment of the blog.

  1. Finding reasonably priced flights at the last for Mother’s Day weekend leaves you with few options. The only real option there was, in the end, was Spirit Airlines, which still felt exorbitant for a flight lasting just over an hour and thirty minutes, but was reasonable enough that my dad was willing to fund the trip not only for me, but also for my partner, who graciously agreed to take unpaid time off work and come with me for moral support.
  2. Spirit Airlines is…interesting. We’d flown Spirit before, but this was a flight to remember. While we waited at the gate, we were entertained by a couple of year-old babies who were becoming fast friends, their interactions narrated by the boisterous grandmother of the smaller-but-older child of the pair. Once we were on the flight, we found ourselves behind a couple of men who appeared religious and looked like they’d fit right in on the youth ministry team of an evangelical megachurch somewhere (one of them was reading a slim volume entitled Jesus Christ: The Real Story)…and who also appeared to be completely stoned out of their brains. The one who wasn’t reading was extremely chatty and spent the entire flight talking with the Russian woman across the aisle. At the end of the flight, he tried to tell my partner and I that we should stay on the plane and continue on to Vegas, which prompted the following exchange:

    Me: This isn’t that kind of trip.
    Him: Why not?
    Me: Grandma’s funeral.
    Him: Oh, man, I didn’t know that. That sucks…You should smoke some weed!

  3. I have really wonderful family with whom I share no actually biological ties. My dad is an only child, but he’s known his two best friends since kindergarten and junior high, respectively, and I think I was well into my teens before I realized my Uncles weren’t actually related to me in any way. As we gathered to remember Grandma, I was struck by how wonderful it is to know that the chosen family members I was handed as a child have truly chosen me as an adult.
  4. The trip home was…an adventure. We were supposed to fly out of Minneapolis at around 6:30 Monday evening. Our flight was delayed five times (I’m not even exaggerating when I say that) before ultimately being canceled. Not wanting to deal with the airline any longer, we decided to get the tickets refunded and rent a car to drive back to Chicago instead. We slept a few hours at my partner’s parents’ house before heading out just after 3am, which mostly meant that Monday felt like the longest day ever and I think we skipped Tuesday entirely. When we finally stumbled into our apartment, we literally kissed the door frame, we were so happy to be home.
  5. I have the world’s best support system. From a partner who was willing to travel with me at the last minute, giving up paid days at work to be my moral support, to the friends who were willing to be our transport to and from the airport at all sorts of hours, this whole trip really drove home the fact that I have been blessed with a strong, unbelievably wonderful network of support. If I had needed to make that trip home by myself, I don’t know what I would have done. Probably cried and screamed and possibly done someone bodily harm. As it was, I had my partner with me, who remained calm (cheerful, even) for the entire airport experience, and who was loopy and exhausted with me all the way home. I’m one seriously lucky human.

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