Airports, Christmas and Breakfast in Bed

Today’s thankfuls: smart phones and WordPress 2.0 for the Android. It may take forever to write a post from my phone, but I’m a man on a mission today!

Sunday afternoon I arrived at PDX a little bit after 1:00. Going through security felt surreal; actually boarding the airplane was even stranger. I’m used to picking people up or dropping them off at airports – not flying. I managed to grab a window seat near the wing and settled in for takeoff. I was a little
nervous as the engines powered up and we raced down the runway, and then we were airborne. “This isn’t so bad,” I thought as we ascended to our cruising altitude, and I settled back to enjoy the flight.

That’s when it got bumpy.

Turbulence was so bad it felt like we were on a roller coaster for awhile. Worse still, the captain wouldn’t let the flight attendants out of their seats for the beverage service. I wanted my bloody mary!!!

About halfway there things calmed down, and I was able to breathe again. I got my drink – free of charge, even – plus a bag of peanuts and pretzels. Thank you, Southwest. The last hour was completely smooth, and I actually started to enjoy the whole experience. It was dusk as we descended into Vegas, and the lights were just coming on. I saw the Luxor and a few other neon-bathed hotels. And then we were on the ground.

I met Tara in the baggage claim area, and we embraced with our usual fervor. I wished her a Merry Christmas and we kissed for awhile. Stopped for a quick bite to eat and then left Vegas for the long 4-hour drive to Ely. That was uneventful; there were no strange lights in the sky, but we did pull over at one point to look at the stars. There was no moon and the sky was clear; all I can say is, wow.

It was damn cold, too. 13 when we reached her house around 10:30. It felt great to walk through the door again; when I left on September 11th I didn’t even know if we were going to pursue a relationship. Now we’re practically inseparable and I love it! We settled in next to her Christmas tree and exchanged gifts…what a blast that was! It’s so nice having somebody special to share the holiday with. I love everything she got me, but just being there was the greatest gift of all.

Tara didn’t have to work on Monday, so we spent the morning lounging in bed and watching movies. She made us scrambled eggs and green chili gravy (yum!!) with tortillas, which we also ate in bed. Talk about a decadent morning. I didn’t want to leave, but eventually we got up. Took a walk, relaxed at her place some more, and then drove out to visit her grandparents for awhile. They are very nice people, friendly and warm and welcoming. I like them a lot. I also got to meet her sister Maggie. A little after 5 we drove back into town and met up with some people at Racks for Monday Night Football. Maggie was there, along with Tara’s youngest sister Jessie, Jessie’s boyfriend Arturo, and another friend named Taylor. Oh, and then Tara’s dad showed up. We all had a good time and enjoyed delicious greasy bar food. I apologize to my body for that, but whatever. We left about 7:30, made a quick stop at the grocery store, then back to Tara’s place, where we crashed early.

She has to work most of this week, so we kissed goodbye and she left around 7. I’m enjoying coffee and watching a movie and just generally kicking back and relaxing. She’s going to pick up lunch for us, and this evening I’m cooking her dinner: my oughtta-be-famous chicken cacciatore. Role reversals be damned, it all feels pretty domestic and I’m kinda digging it.

This visit is off to a fantastic start, and I’m loving every minute of it. There may not be any snow in the forecast, damn it, but otherwise it’s perfect.

Catch ya later!


Published by Mark Petruska

I'm a professional writer and editor living my best life in south central Wisconsin.

28 thoughts on “Airports, Christmas and Breakfast in Bed

  1. Glad you made it safely, Mark. I don’t do well with turbulance during flights at all. I’m not afraid to fly, but I guess I just like the smooth trips. Hoping to see you the weekend of January 6th when I’m in Portland.


  2. I think this is a pretty good indicator of how things will be when we’re living together, and I can’t wait! Yes, everything has been wonderful so far and I love how much you enjoy the little things and never take anything for granted.

    And we still have a whole week left! Yay!


  3. Mark, I was sooooo thinking of you a few days ago, when I remembered you were boarding a PLANE after not flying for so long and hoping all went well!

    Yaaaaaay! You got there safely!!!!!

    Yeah, and I hear you about the turbulence – I FREAKIN’ HATE IT!!!!

    So glad you and Tara are having a super time with one another!

    I’m so looking forward to reading more about your trip in the upcoming week!

    Have a grrrrrrreat time, buddy!


  4. I love IRONPORT!!

    “Nuff said!!

    Actually…I’m thrilled that you are having a great time and that you actually flew. It really is a great way to travel!!

    Talk to you and Tara soon!!


    1. Donald Merwin Elbert? This is the first time you’ve stumped me, Tracy! I could Google it….but I’m preoccupied with your daughter. Glad you enjoyed your Christmas gift, and it was nice talking to you!


  5. Yay, glad you arrived safely! I hate to fly and hate turbulence – the last time I came home from ATL – I didn’t think we were going to make it back because it was pretty bumpy. Have a great time!! 🙂


  6. So glad to hear your trip is off to a fantastic start! Hope it continues and I’ll ask Mother Nature to send the snow that I may have to drive in in North Dakota on Friday your way, you can have it I won’t mind.


  7. Hi Mark! Catching up on everyone’s holidays and it sounds like you and Tara are having a wonderful, albeit chilly, Christmas. I was so thankful that Wisconsin didn’t get any snow over the holiday cause it made our driving so much easier and faster. One of my favorite presents I got this Christmas was a copy of YOUR BOOK as well as Madge’s (Margaret Reyes Dempsey). So excited to read the work by two of my favorite people!!! Enjoy your getaway. Remember: fuzzy zebra socks. They’ll help keep you warm while Tara’s at work. 🙂


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