Tuesday, February 02, 2010

Breakfast on the Road

We finally left the house around 9:30 pm and realized as we maneuvered towards the highway that Ashley did not have her ID as she had left her wallet in her parents' car the last time she had gone out with them. So we quickly deviated from the printed driving directions and headed for a nearby town to meet her father and get her wallet. No id - no admission to the base! We were so grateful that we realized this when we did or it would have been a catastrophe.We prayed a decade of Rosary to help Cecilia settle in her carseat and I also gave her some teething tablets to help calm her as she was very agitated due to her ear infection and teething! Thankfully the nurse practitioner had prescribed a decongestant for her to help combat the pressure we expected her to feel in her ears as we hit the quickly changing altitudes through the Appalachians in West Virgina. Sadly she did wake as we hit that area and screamed while pathetically stretching her arms out to me; signing that she wanted me to pick her up. We had to stop for a while to help calm her. Once she was calmer we headed back onto the highway again, and when we hit Kentucky pulled into a truck stop and parked in what felt like full sunlight. Hugo laid down on the bed that was made up behind the front seats to try and get an hour or two of rest. Unfortunately all of the children woke and there was almost constant murmuring as they tried to rearrange themselves and get comfortable. Cecilia cuddled gratefully in my arms - ecstatic to be free of her car seat. I sat in the front passenger seat with my coat over her and tried to sleep... with little success. After an hour of this constant fidgeting, Hugo gave up and before hitting the highway again we stopped by MacDonalds and grabbed some coffees. A few hours later we drove into the daybreak and sighed in relief. Kids were now fully awake so I passed out the yogurts, muffins and juice boxes.

We reached the base at about 8:30 am only to learn that Miguel would not be available to his family until after 4 pm. (They were preparing for graduation and going through the various stages of it!) We could not check into the hotel until 3 pm.... By now Hugo and I were pretty desperate for another caffeine fix.

Jennie had emailed me a few times and told me to call her once we were at Fort Knox so I did.

"Hi Jennie! We are here! We are in desperate need of some coffee so do you know of a coffee shop or can we swing by for one at your place?" Her warm laugh filled my ear as she explained that she does not go out for coffee so the only solution she could offer was coffee at her place. She gave wonderfully detailed directions that were so easy to follow! Little did I know she was having serious back pain and she also hid it well while we were there! We enjoyed meeting Daisy and Maybelle but only Maybelle greeted us as soon as we parked. It was a cold day and soft wisps of breath blew from her soft black nose while some of us rubbed it. Her calf remained lazily curled up in her warm pile of hay watching curiously as we greeted her mama.

Once the whole crew had disembarked from our now very disordered vehicle, with the occasional pillow or toy tumbling out, we headed over towards the back door of the house. It was a good guess as to which door to approach because it opened before we were all across the wide driveway. There in real life was Jenny holding Thomas and the other children gathered behind peering at the rest of us. There was some to be expected shyness on both sides but Jenny greeted us like old lost friends and we immediately felt at home in a way we would never have felt in a coffee shop!

More later...

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