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July 7, 2001
two years ago
three years ago
four years ago

Heading Home

8:54 pm: Jet had an utterly excellent flight. His night wasn't too rocky, either, he just got up at 2:45 and then again to 5, and both were feedings, but he went right back to sleep after both. He did do some thumping around after the 5 am feeding, but he did stay quiet and fairly content until 7, when the alarm went off. John brought Jet upstairs with him and I didn't even realize it until it was 7:30 and I was up.

We had to leave by 9:30, and we were aiming for 9:15. We would have made it, too, if my guts hadn't decided that they were really unhappy. Ah well, that's what the extra time was for.

It also took quite some time to say good bye, as Isabel and George knew that it would be a while before they could see Jet again and he'd, yet again, be a completely different baby. It was good to take the trouble to say the good-byes properly.

We got to the rental car return in plenty of time, checked stuff pretty quickly, and got out to the gate with half an hour before the plane was supposed to leave. The lady at the check-in had given John and I the aisle and the window seat of an empty row, so only if the plane was packed would they be filling the middle seats, too. We were pretty content with the possibilities and got one last latte before boarding the plane with the courtesy boarding of folks with small children.

There was a couple with two twins just across the aisle. I was pretty impressed with their kid handling. They had one girl and one boy, seven months old and they weren't much bigger than Jet; but you could see that they had much finer control of their hands and could sit up pretty well in their seat that they shared between their parents. I was pretty impressed that they just fussed a bit before settling in.

In the first row on the right side was pretty much travelling Hell. One kid throwing up constantly and when he wasn't doing that he was screaming like a siren. I was pretty proud of Jet not picking up on that and screaming his head off himself. The twins did a pretty good job of not picking up on the poor kid, either. I really hope that the kid was just motion sick and not down with something communicable. With the way he was screaming he might have just been sick from hysterics, too.

It was kind of nice for all the parents to have all the kids in nearly the first four rows. We didn't have to worry too much about being 'loud' with the screaming kid there, too.

No one showed up for the middle seat of our row, so Jet got to lie there and play after take-off and a short nap after nursing on me while we took off. He had a good time kicking and smiling and basically being able to stretch instead of being held by John or I, which seems to be really important to his happiness while travelling, because he was basically a happy guy while we flew. He ate, slept, then played for a while. John changed him midway through, and then he just played some more before eating and sleeping a bit as we went down.

Much better than on the way there, but I think that the room to wiggle may have played a key part in his being so good for the trip to and from San Diego. He didn't have it on the way to Seattle, which might have explained his unhappiness.

We walked the walkway to baggage claim from Concourse A, so we were the first to arrive. Our bags were the first to arrive as well, and we got everything but the car seat and waited for it for a bit. I then spotted it by the odd-sized luggage, with some of the pieces off, the hood keeps slipping off. John put it back together and we were off.

The muggy heat outside hit us like a wet blanket. It was so hot. The shuttle went all the way to the wrong end of the parking lot because the driver thought I'd said 3T instead of 3B. Oops. But he rectified himself and brought us right to our car.

We went right to the Moonlight Cafe. I had a buffalo burger with fries and a strawberry shake. John had a cheeseburger with onion rings and a chocolate shake. They were very good. Jet cheerfully played with his toys while we ate, and eventually needed a change. When we were done he needed to eat again, so we sat in the car for twenty minutes and let him suckle while we had the air conditioning running and we watched the thunderheads coming our way.

There were tremendous thunderstorms headed towards us. For the last ten minutes of our run into DIA, the sky was completely covered with a blanket of clouds and here and there were the nuclear blast mushrooms and anvil shaped darkness of huge thunderheads forming all over. Our jet went around all those formations, banking to and fro as we wound our way through. We had to get close to one monster cloud on our final approach, and we could feel the pilot making the bank to get around the edge of it.

All the time we were in the diner we were praying that those storms would hit us. We prayed even harder when we got home and found that it was 90 inside the house and 98 outside the house. Ugh. We retreated to the basement and the air conditioning labored heroically and only got the temperature down two degrees in the house. Just too much heat momentum. It was pretty terrible.

After the huge 'lunch' at 4 at the Moonlight Cafe neither of us were in any mood for a dinner or, in this heat, for cooking. So we just camped downstairs with Jet and his toys and I fed him for a while, and he napped a little. Then we just played and played until he pooped some more. He'd already done two big poops in the morning, but I guess the time when the went two days without doing it at all he build a backup or something.

I cleaned him up, gave him his massage and then John decided we might as well give him a bath. So he drew the water and in the midst of all this heat, we gave Jet a bath and he loved it. It really helped cool him off, and he really wanted to eat afterwards, so we settled downstairs again to watch some Jackie Chan on TBS, and we were cool and comfortable for quite some time.

John went upstairs to take a shower and after I heard the water start running I heard a sound like small bits of glass hitting the glass of the windows to the basement. It was hail! Small hail, luckily, just pea-sized, but it was hail, and then the rain started coming down. John opened up everything upstairs while I finished Jet's feeding and then we put Jet on the bed while we unpacked everything. A lot of it ended up in the laundry baskets, some of it ended up in the kitchen, a lot of the presents and toys ended up in Jet's room.

Jet had a great time with one of the sleepers we were unpacking, playing peek a boo with it. He seems to really like making the world go away and then have it al come back again with a motion of his hands. He laughs every time he sees the world again, and squawks a bit when it goes away; but he really has discovered that he can control it with his hands and arms.

Jet's really developed much finer hand control this trip out and back. He handles a lot of things more deftly now, and can pass things from hand to hand. I'm really impressed.

I am pretty amazed at how much Jet's packed into learning in the first five months. Going from a creature that didn't even realize that those things that went flying by his line of almost sight were actually attached to him to a kid that's actually passing things from hand to hand or actually grabbing what he wants to grab; and almost sitting up when he used to not even have the strength to control his own head is pretty astonishing.

I never really realized just how low ground zero really is before Jet.

Anyway, after Jet's last feeding he actually did go to sleep with a little persuasion. The storm had come in for real and the air was much cooler and much more humid. Looks like the wet weather should last a little while. 50 percent chance of rain tomorrow. The house is far cooler now than it ever seemed it could be just a few hours ago.

The thunder woke Jet up once already, and John and I are both too hot and a bit too wired from the travelling and the time zone change to go to sleep yet. So we're watching the Red Green show, and I'm writing my journal. I tried a glass of milk, but both half gallons and the little bit from the week before was all spoiled, all of it had gone bad. I think that the last few times we weren't able to bring the milk in until late, and the morning sun hits the milk box first thing. So the milk might have been out in the warmth a bit too long the last few weeks.

We might put an ice box out for it Tuesday night, with a bunch of blue ice in there to keep things cool. Otherwise it's going to do this a lot more than I want it to.

That was disappointing. I just had ice water with a chocolate chip cookie and settled for that as the house cooled down considerably. While I was trying to get Jet back to sleep after some thunder, I watched the lightning outside look just like a strobe, rendering the world in black and white flashes so fast it was like some disco strobe gone random in its timing. It's so close and fast.

If I do miss something when I leave Colorado it'll be the thunderstorms and being able to see them from miles and hours away. I'll miss the lightning storms that put nearly all firework displays I've ever seen to shame, and the clattering roar of thunder going all around us as the lightning flashes. I'm still amazed that the thunder can sound all around us that way.

Well, we're home. As much as I miss Seattle, I also missed home, I guess. I still hate the heat, but I do love how a thunderstorm can cool things off. I am really glad to sleep in my own bed, and it'll be nice to feed Jet in the usual spots so that John can sleep, and it'll be good to be able to sleep when John takes care of Jet when it's not a feeding. It'll be good to use the changing table again, and good to have the much nicer pump.

It was a great adventure, though.

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