Before we’d even left home Wednesday night, we had a crisis. I had a potato baking in the microwave (which I’d done a million times) and we were upstairs packing. Joey was downstairs barking but that’s nothing unusual, he’s a barky dog. When I came downstairs, the kitchen was full of smoke, pouring out of the microwave. In this model, there’s a baked potato button and while it’s cooking it flashes “potato” until it gets to about 2 minutes and then it starts counting down the time. (I’ve never been able to figure out how long the cycle actually is, it probably depends on the size and number of potatoes.) But when I got to it, the countdown said 13 minutes and I knew the thing had malfunctioned, big time (as if the smoke wasn’t enough, duh). I grabbed the glass turntable out of machine and ran it out to the deck. We opened windows, doors, put on a fan and finally got most of the smoke cleared out. But the smell had gone all the way upstairs and even down the hall to my studio. It’s a good thing we weren’t running to catch a plane, I can’t even imagine what kind of additional stress that would have created.
It was still there when we got home, even the birds and squirrels wanted nothing to do with it:
We had no choice but to close up the house and go, so we dropped Joey off at Ed and Susan’s and drove to Chesapeake (2 hour drive) to spend the night with Erin. Our flight out of Norfolk left at 5:45 am so we only got a few hours sleep before getting up at 3.
We had uneventful flights to San Antonio and just messed around on Thursday. We had a buffet dinner on base with Kevin and his family. Erin’s friend and bridesmaid Liz, who is in the National Guard in Milwaukee, just happened to be at Fort Sam Houston in San Antonio for classes and had a free weekend. So we picked her up and she stayed the weekend with us. It took us an hour driving around in circles (even with the GPS) to find her. I have to say that I didn’t enjoy driving around San Antonio. Their highway system was laid out by a maniac, with overhead ramps everywhere that sometimes confused the GPS. Out in the suburbs was better, but still. I never really appreciated how easy it is to get around Richmond until then.
I have to say that we brought clothing for the 60F days that were forecast for the weekend. However, graduation day Friday dawned with an unforecasted (is that a word?) arctic blast that we were ill prepared for. The ceremony was outdoors at the parade grounds on metal bleachers. The temp was 41F with a 34F wind chill. And the wind was blowing, I’m telling you. We sat there for close to two hours and even though we were packed into those bleachers like sardines, we still ended up like popsicles. Kevin’s parents had only brought light jackets so his mother brought a blanket with her from the hotel, which was the only thing that saved her. John and I had our heaviest jackets, thank goodness, but we were miserable nonetheless. As I expected, a number of my photos are blurry because of John’s shivering 🙂
Allow me to introduce Airman 1st Class Terry:
After graduation, we hung around base because Kevin and the other graduates didn’t get town pass until 2pm. We went to Olive Garden for an early dinner and John, Liz and I went to the mall and later met Kevin’s family at the AT&T Center for a hockey game.
To be continued…