3:45 AM - the alarm called out the start of our Great West Adventure. We were ticketed for a 7:00 departure from Milwaukee’s General Mitchell Airport. With 3 and 10 year old in tow, we didn’t want to leave anything to risk. So we all showered the night before, set the alarm for 3:45, and aimed to leave by 4:15.
The plan went off without a hitch - the crew was excited for the trip. We pulled into our offsite parking lot at 5:10, plenty of time to spare. I suppose we could have probably slept a little longer, but who knows on a work day how bad traffic will get. After a quick shuttle ride we were at the ticketing counter, then off to the gate to meet up with our first trip on Southwest Airlines.
I’m not sure if you’ve flown Southwest before, but here’s how it works. Basically it’s like a bus - you get on the plane, pick a seat, and sit there. Their fares are pretty low and they don’t charge for luggage, so we decided to risk it. In actuality they do give you a number to board, so we would have been the 90th people to board the aircraft, if we hadn’t “won the lottery” by traveling with Quin. After the preferred ticket holders, group A, Soutwest lets families with children under 5 board so they can hope to sit together. Us and another family took advantage of this rule and boarded the plane. Quin and I sat together in one row with Jenny and Ethan sitting behind us.
The flight was pretty uneventful. Quin couldn’t wait to “blast off”. As we taxied down the runway to do so, however, he promptly fell asleep for about 30 minutes, some of the most peaceful on the flight for me!! Actually he was a good flyer. Surprisingly, another set of good flyers were the set of 2 dachshunds flying in this woman’s carryon a couple rows ahead of us. I couldn’t believe that they would sit still and quiet for a 4 hour flight in that little bag!
When we got to Arizona, Mom and Dad Grady picked us up at Sky Harbor Airport, still the best name for an airport as far as I can determine. Though we arrived fairly early in the day - we got to mom and dad’s southern home by 11 AM local time, we were pretty well spent. We took the rest of the day fairly easy by picking up some odds and ends that we weren’t able to pack and swimming in the old folk’s pool at the community. One smallish faux pax on my part was that I bought the wrong pull-ups for Quinny. He still sleeps in night-time pull-ups. I was assigned to go to WalMart and pick up some various things that we couldn’t get, one of which were pull-ups. Jenny and Ethan were shocked to find that I had actually purchased princess pull-ups rather than the normal Cars 2 pull-ups. Luckily Quinny was OK with it.
We dined out at (Organ Stop Pizza)[http://www.organstoppizza.com] in Mesa for dinner, truly an amazing sight! This largish restaurant is completely filled with glockenspiels, pipes, drums, dancing cats, and gobs of other things, all hooked into the central organ where the organist controls it all. We got to take in a 45 minute show while we polished off a pitcher of beer and 2 pizzas.
Back to the folk’s pad, we finished up the evening fairly early. I’m pretty sure we were all sleeping by 8:00 local time. Mom and dad were surprised until they realized that we had been up since 2:00 AM local time… All in all it was a decent travel day.