I’m back! It was a long trip, coast to coast, with all the usual pains of travel, mixed with joys of seeing family, some of them after far too long apart.
Pains of travel? I was scheduled to arrive last night at about 10:30 my time, which would have had us home and relaxing before midnight. Reality? shortly before 10 pm I became aware that all was not right. We’d lifted off from Philadelphia, but we weren’t high enough yet, and the engines didn’t sound right (not broken, just not accelerating the way they ought to have been at that point). Several minutes later, the stewardess announced that we were returning to the airport. Shortly after that, she said that we were going to have maintenance look at the plane. Then she said we’d be staying onboard… then just before we landed, she said we’d be getting off at the gate.
Hoo boy. I knew we were in for it, then. I’m not a nervous flyer. I’ve flown under *interesting* conditions although not, to my knowledge, in a badly broken bird. We landed safely, I unclenched my fingers from the armrest and breathed yet another prayer. Turns out we’d hit a bird (or did the bird hit us?) on ascent. The pilot, chatting with another passenger, described it as sounding like a softball hitting the side of a moving car. He told us that it had hit the radome hard enough to pop open a latch, but not do any other damage.
So I spent my midnight in the air, with a cheerful pilot doing a countdown. There were some scattered claps in the cabin as he finished it, but I think of the dozen of us on the plane, most were asleep.
It didn’t matter, really. I got to hug my First Reader a little over thirty minutes into the New Year. I got to sleep in my own bed, with a warm companion. The dog is beside herself with happiness I’m home. Overall, the trip went well. I have hundreds of photos, and I will not share all of them on the blog! I’ll pick some choice ones out. Grandma has requested some from the last place we visited in Oregon, the High Desert Museum.
Tomorrow I will return the blog to the regularly scheduled routine. Maybe I’ll take a little time to do a retrospective on 2014, but today I’m not ready for that much thinky and looking up stuff (because my brain isn’t in gear!). Also, I should start writing like mad, as Dragon Noir stalled, I wrote about a thousand words on the trip. Which wasn’t unexpected, but it does mean I have 25 days to write about 50K words in!