We packed all of our teenagers off to Virginia earlier this week and we can't get over the strangeness of not having them around. The food budget is enjoying a rare surplus, but it's just not right around here. What an adventure for them, though. On Sunday night Taylor, Ethan and Claire managed to successfully fly across the country, stopping in Las Vegas and Atlanta before arriving in Richmond, Va., at about 10 a.m. Monday morning. My biggest concern, as expressed to them just before taking off, was that they'd blow the 80 bucks I gave them at the slots and craps tables in the Vegas airport. When I said that, Taylor gave me the look that says, "You funny Dad. You real funny."
We called them on the cell phone at each layover, including a 2:30 a.m. chat when they were in Atlanta. They made it just fine and friends picked them up in Richmond. Praise the Lord. They come back on Thursday, but this time fly in broad daylight. Plus they're veterans now, so methinks I'll be more relaxed about this leg o' the journey. Brenton left town on Wednesday, but we don't really worry about him traveling across the U.S. of A. This is a guy that made a 24-hour solo trip to Israel when he was 18. He departed from D.C. at around 8 p.m., flew to Heathrow London, where he had something like an eight-hour layover, then when he got to Tel Aviv he had to find a cab and communicate to the cabbie where to take him in Jerusalem. Mind you there was this issue of a "language barrier." To top it all off, we didn't finally receive word he made it until a couple days later due to various Internet availability and telephonic "issues." But the Lord is with that kid, I tell you. We know the kids are having a great time with their friends back home, and getting their braces fixed as well, but we're ready for them to come back. Yesterday.