Friday, August 24, 2007

Some days are BIGGER than others!

Yesterday was a BIG day in our lives. When the yellow school bus rolled down our road my grandaughters jumped up and down. My daughter swallowed back her tears, while my husband took pictures of Alex and Kylie climbing aboard. And me, well, I'm glad it was bright out so I could wear my sun glasses to hide my emotions as I waved enthusiastically.

Babyhood has officially been left behind and Kindergarten has taken its place. My girls looked so little yet happy when the bus pulled away. I remember letting go all those years ago too ~
Then poof, the moment for memories was gone. My daughter raced off to work while Kurt and I headed for DeKalb, hoping the ray of sunshine and blue skies would last through the morning. See, my husband was getting his Father's Day present ~ a little late, but still an exciting adventure.

By the time we arrived at the DeKalb airport, the sky was clear with the exception of fluffy clouds that didn't deter us. The T-6 (texan) WWII Advanced Flight Trainer stood on the tarmac waiting. Kurt was going up. Once all the papers were signed and numerous pictures taken ~ think John Wayne war movies and you'll have the right kind of plane and the appropriate stance for pictures. The pilot had Kurt pose just like the actors back in the day ... fun, silly, but he looked damn good, too!

By nine-thirty I stood alone on a deserted airstrip watching the plane climb to dizzing heights. I thought of all those papers my husband had been made to sign and my stomach squeezed. Then they were out of sight and the wind and sun were my only companions for the next forty-five minutes.

The T-6 has the capability of flying fast, some 250 miles per hour, and the pilot had promised a full arsenal of manuevers. Words like barrel roll, loops, and immelmans were mentioned and I tried not to think too much about the ejection technique Kurt had been given before take off. I needn't have worried, Kurt enjoyed each belly drop and rush of adrenaline, even though he climbed from the plane as clumsily as a drunkered.

Since Kurt looked a little weary from his trip, I drove and we headed west. We had the day to ourselves and planned a road trip with no destination in mind. We took no interstate roads, and left the windows down and the sunroof open as we puttered down Route 64.

What is it about playing hooky for a day that it becomes bigger and so freeing? Stepping out of the routine of our lives is well, liberating! Responsibilities melt away and the world looks a little nicer, a little more exciting.

We visited White Pines State Park, the Mississippi Palasades, and walked through antique stores in rustic Galena. We drank a little, ate too much and spent money on things we couldn't have found anywhere else ... really!

We drove into rain and watched lightening light up the sky. Ditches overflowed with water and only when we got closer to home did reality catch up and we wondered what the latest storm did to our place.

We had been gone only fourteen hours, but it felt longer. We had escaped our daily routines and enjoyed the time together to do nothing, all the while filling the day with wonderful sights and sounds, and best of all memories.

I highly recommend playing hooky! It's good for the soul. I feel more rested today, more capable of handling what comes my way. But please ... no more rain! Even us farmers have had more than we can use. As for my writing, I'm looking forward to setting down and trying out a new twist that popped into my head while we meandered down some highway.

Til next time~

DL Larson

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