Wednesday, November 2, 2011

All Home

Last Saturday at 6 a.m. a group of wanderers all but fell into the house, wrung out from the road.

My family was home.

Indeed, Michelle, ably supported by her sister, had driven with the children non-stop from Iowa back to New England. Their trip, thankfully, was uneventful. But it may not have been.

That's because, as those in the northeast U.S. surely know, that a rare October snowstorm was bearing down just as the gang was journeying eastward. I didn't even know about this Nor'easter until I was watching the national nightly news. Concerned, I went on the web and checked out the forecast at various points along Michelle's route. It did not look pretty, at least if you're driving. The midsection of Pennsylvania, for example, was expected to get up to 10 inches of snow. This, it goes without saying, would make for some tough sledding, especially for a sleep-deprived crew.

I checked the forecast for upstate New York. To my surprise, it called for clouds, with only a 20-30 percent chance of mostly rain. Heartened, I called Michelle. She, her sister and the boys had just passed Cleveland. In just several miles, they could veer north and hop on to Interstate 90.

It turned out to be a good move. Pennsylvania got dumped by snow. Meanwhile, upstate New York stayed nice and dry, and our gang motored on through, unimpeded, although bone-tired, to our little bayside town.

I was so, so happy to see everyone. It is hard to describe how much I missed them. I felt this odd sensation the full 10 days they were gone, truly as if a piece of me had been physically ripped from my being and taken away. I only got that piece of me back when they returned.

Despite the joy, everyone came back in varied states of illness. Which means that not only were the boys antsy and out of sorts from their long trip, but they were a little strung out from coughs and colds. The honeymoon doesn't last long, now does it? And, yes, by Monday, I had succumbed to the germs, coming down with a nasty cold myself that I think I'm just coming out of.

Whatever. I'll take the cold and the cough – so long as my family remains after delivering them. I am that glad they are home.

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