December 4, 2014
We are a day behind schedule, but Sister Cole has officially started her last leg of her trip to the Mexico City MTC! It has been a couple of long crazy days. After multiple delays on Wednesday, a re-book for Thursday and another early (showering in the 3's???...yuck!) departure out of Eugene this morning, she is almost there! She is in the air as I type!! Here is what has been going on the last couple of days...
We all (littles included) woke up in the 4's and 5's yesterday morning and took Charlie to the airport in Eugene. We could tell something was up right away when we arrived at to check her bags. Her flight would be delayed one hour. We had a few different explanations: weather trouble in San Francisco, late arrival of an earlier flight so the crew needed an hour to sleep (wait, what?!) The ticket agent said not to worry because she had a long layover in San Francisco and she would have time to make her connecting flight to Mexico City.
All was well. A bit more hang out time with our Charlie before she left us for a year and half was not a bad thing. While we were waiting for her to go to the gate I suggested to Charlie that she take her phone along with her. (This is an important detail. The night before she left we were talking about how she would contact Mission Travel, the MTC or us if there were some troubles with the traveling. She, of course, would not be taking her phone with her on her mission. How do you call people when you don' have a phone? Oh ya, a payphone? Who and how do people use payphones these days? Are there payphones still around to use? We went to Freddies and found a payphone to check it out and practice. Ew. Public phones. But, in an emergency it could work. We found out that she could use a calling card in the states, but once she got to Mexico she would not be able to use it.) Anyway, that was the plan until we started seeing there already some wrinkles. We decided she should take her phone with her while she traveled and then dispose of it when she got to the MTC.
While we were waiting in the airport we noticed that the departure time on the kiosk listed an earlier departure time than what the agent had stated. Good news! Charlie headed through security, up the escalator to the gate, and we waved and blew kisses until we couldn't see her anymore. We headed for home with our tired children.
While on the way home, Charlie texted us letting us know the flight had been delayed again and ticket agents were busy trying to re-ticket passengers who were going to miss there connecting flights. She was told they couldn't guaranty she would make her connection. Then we received another text that they were boarding and would figure things out in San Francisco. It's kind of a blur after that, but at some point they took everyone back off the plane and started the re-ticketing process again. By this time we were back home, the kids were crashing and I had started going through Charlie's room. (Best to do it when I was numb:)
Anyway, I really can't recall all the back and forth that happened that morning. What I do know is that when I called Untied Airlines, Chad was quite useful in determining that the flights going to Mexico City later that day were full and that he could squeeze her on a flight for Thursday morning if she could get her bags off the current plane. Charlie was able to get her bags off the plane and I headed back down to Eugene to get her. After two trips back and forth to Eugene we all crashed for a siesta in the mid afternoon and re-grouped for Thursday.
We learned an important lesson about waking littles up in the 4's and 5's for a trip that doesn't result in an exciting destination (like Disneyland) and decided that Darin and I would be the only Cole's to make the Thursday trip to the airport. We had a nice quiet evening and TRIED to go to bed early, but sleep escaped us. Too much anticipation I guess.
Today has been a much easier travel day for Charlie. She had just a slight delay out of San Francisco, and she is a little tired from a couple of crazy days, but she sounds great! We are so excited for her and this adventure. She knows she is where she needs to be and is looking forward to serving and loving the Latino community in Idaho.
I have been inspired by brother in laws blog for his daughters mission, so I thought we might try it for Charlie! I will post her correspondence and pictures here. If you know of other people who would like to follow Charlie's tale, let me know and I will add them to the list!
Love to you all!