...I sang for 4 hours in the car today. So, why isn't it over yet?
Here it goes.
June 25th I drove up to Yokota AFB from Yokosuka hoping to get on a flight to Travis AFB, CA that afternoon. There were only 20 seats available and Jocelyn and I were numbers 35 and 36 on the list. I didn't want to drive all the way home and there was another flight scheduled for the morning of the 27th. So, we stayed in a room at the lodge on base for two nights and returned to the terminal at 0400 on Friday morning.
This flight had 73 seats and we were selected. Yay. However, this flight was not a direct flight to Travis. It was scheduled to go from Yokota to Osan, South Korea to Kadena, Japan (on the island of Okinawa) to Hickam AFB, Hawaii to Travis AFB, CA. That day we flew to Osan and had lunch with my sister Amanda (mmm Charley's). Then got back on the plane and flew to Kadena. We spent the night at Kadena. The humidity at Kadena was disgusting and I walked 4 giant blocks from the lodging office to the nasty building that they put me in. I had a second floor room in a building with no elevator...with 2 giant suitcases, a stroller, a car seat, a carry on, a back pack and a diaper bag. I tried to do laundry that night and had some bats to keep me company in the laundry room. Gross!
Anyway, I showed up the next morning at the terminal ready to fly to Hawaii, and the passenger service reps were telling all of us that the plane had to take a detour to Andersen AFB, Guam. No big deal...but, they said that the cargo the plane was picking up in Guam was 'high priority' and we would all likely get booted off the plane there and have to compete for a new flight when and if there was one. Over half of the passengers opted to stay in Kadena and find other means of travel back to the states. I felt like taking my chances and got on the plane to Guam. As soon as we got on the plane I asked the crew what my chances were of getting back on for the flight to Hawaii the next day. They told me that all the passengers were manifested all the way through to Travis and that the guys in the terminal had no clue what they were talking about! All those people that decided not to get on the plane got screwed! So, we landed in Guam. One of the girls on the plane happend to live there and she let Jocelyn and I stay at her house for the night, saving us at least $150 on cab and hotel fare.
The next day (June 29th) we flew to Hawaii (and landed in Hawaii on June 28th). At this point Brad and I decided that I would get off in Hawaii, instead of going all the way through to California, because his ship was going to be porting in Hawaii on the 1st of July. Jocelyn and I hung out in Hawaii for 2 days waiting for him. We went shopping with our new friend, Cristine, who we met on the flight from Guam (who also happens to be stationed at Yokosuka). The day the ship pulled in, I went to pick up my friend Melynda from the airport. She was actually moving to Hawaii, not just meeting the ship there. She was a bit stressed from the relocation overload. We kept telling ourselves that Brad and I are going to get orders to Hawaii too, and then it would all be okay. Haha.
Brad and I had a great time in Hawaii. We hung out at the pool and got really bad sunburns, saw a couple movies, spent too much on dinner, watched fireworks on Waikiki beach on the 4th of July, made an attempt to conceive another child, and just enjoyed having our family together.
The day after Brad left I had Cristine and my friend Pam in my rental car and we were headed to the mall to meet Melynda there. I went through an invisible red light and ripped the front off of some guy's truck. He called me later that day and demanded $3000. I told him to have his insurance call me. He called me again the next morning and threatened me. I still haven't heard from his insurance company. So, that's still not over.
The next day Jocelyn and I hopped on a flight from Hickam to Travis. Kylie picked us up and we spent about 7 hours with her before we got on a plane from the Sacramento Airport to Omaha, Nebraska.
We were in Nebraska from the 11th through the 18th of July. The point was to spend some time with my in-laws and introduce Jocelyn to her Grandpa, Aunt, Cousins, etc. It turned out to be far from a vacation. If you have viewed my Myspace photos recently, you know what I am talking about. The house that Brad and I own in Bellevue, NE, near Offutt AFB, was completely trashed by the tenant that was living in it. I had to talk to our insurance agent (our homeowner's insurance won't pay for the damages because it was deliberate abuse and neglect)and a lawyer (who we had to pay $1000 just to get papers together to serve this dumb broad). When I went to the house, I had to excercise some MAJOR self control to not cry and to not punch this b***h in the face! We have not decided whether to get a $20,000 (yes, that's how much damage she caused) home improvement loan to fix the house and rent it out again or if we should sell it as-is for a $30,000-$40,000 loss and lose all the equity we have built. Grrr.
Other than the house situation, Nebraska was a good time. Brad's sister and I took the Hayes grandchildren to get pictures taken. We did some shopping and a litle bit of Karaoke. Brad was sad he wasn't able to go.
On July 18th we flew from Omaha to Monterey, where my sisters Kylie and Stacey, and Stacey's 7 month old Daughter, Jane, picked us up. It was rodeo weekend, but Joey and I didn't make it to the rodeo. We drove around town visiting old friends. I got to show Joey off to a lot of people. We were super lucky to catch Mike and Marilyn Astin while they were in Salinas for the day. Mike is the son of Joey Astin, Jocelyn's namesake. We visited with Belinda Cole, Ron and Jan Johnson, and Jenette Vogt. It was nice to catch up with people that I haven't seen in a while.
On Tueday Kylie, Joseph, Joey and I were headed up to the lake for out Family reunion. We had in-and-out burger with my dad first. Mmmmm.
Finally I got a chance to kick back and relax. The lake was a blast. I did have to drive to Oakhurst one of the days and pay $10 to use the wireless internet at Starbucks so I could do my homework that week. Throughout all of this I have been so proud of myself for staying on top of my school work. Anyway, it was so fun to get to see everyone. This was the 4th annual Tjerrild picnic at Bass Lake...but it was my first! I have been to that lake every summer since I was born except for the last three years. All 7 of my mother's grandchildren were there....6 years, 2 years, 1 year, 7 months, 6 month old twins, and 4 month old Joey!!! So many babies. We tried to take a picture of all of them but there were too many little ones and not enough big ones to hold them. You can look at the best one in my Summer 2008 album on MySpace. My friend Amanda even came up for a couple days, which was awesome because it had been a long time since I saw her. Jetskiing, making s'mores around the campfire, eating yummy food, and just hanging out with family makes up a pretty great week. I can't wait for next year when all of those babies will be running around! Hopefully Brad will get to come next year.
Sunday, July 27th we loaded up and headed to Gonzales. We had dinner at my Dad's with all 6 kids and 7 grandkids. Those pictures actually turned out okay. My brother didn't make it to the lake, so it was cool to have all 6 siblings together that night.
At this point Amanda and I were calling Travis AFB terminal to check for flights back to Korea and Japan, respectively. There was one with 73 seats going from Travis to Hawaii to Guam to Yokota to Osan on Monday morning. 73 seats and we didn't make it on!!!! That turned out to be a very good thing. That plane broke down in Hawaii and got stuck there for 2 days then went to Kadena instead of Yokota and never went to Osan at all!
Jocelyn and I spent a couple nights in the Terminal at Travis and attempeted to get on 4 different flights to Hawaii because Brad was going to be there again for 3 days. We had our bags checked and boarding passes for one that got cancelled at the last minute and we didn't make it on to any of the other ones.
On the 31st of July, Amanda and I finally got on a couple of KC-10s that were flying directly to Yokota. I rove home to Yokosuka and she stayed up at Yokota planning on staying two nights and then getting on a scheduled flight to Osan. They didn't release any seats for the scheduled flights and billeting didn't have a room for her, so I went back up there to pick her up. She and the boys were here for the past 5 days.
Yesterday we tried to drive to Atsugi Naval Air Station so she could get on a small plane to Osan. We drove around for 5 hours and I couldn't find the dang place. The plane left empty! She would have gotten on if I had only paid more attention to where I was going. Today there was a C-5 with 65 seats scheduled from Yokota to Osan. We got there 10 minutes after the show-time but she was still able to talk her way onto the manifest. She checked her bags and boarded the plane. I left and it took me 4 1/2 hours to get back to Yokosuka!!!! I have never been in traffic that bad ever! Uusally it is a 1 1/2 to 2 1/2 hour drive. Anyway, I just got home and checked my answering machine to learn that her plane broke down after they boarded and she had to get off with all her stuff and walk to billeting. Thankfully they had a room for her tonight. Hopefully the plane will get fixed and she will make it home tomorrow.
Here I am. Back to just me and Joey after a crazy month of world travels. Believe it or not, this is the short version of our adventures!!! I learned a couple things this past month. Thanks to all of my frustrations, I have been in control of my spending habits and stopped taking many things for granted. I have also learned that sometimes God puts certain volitle people in your life, not to frustrate you or get on your nerves, but to make you be more aware and thankful of those true friends you have that should not go unappreciated.
I wish I could take a nap for the next week...but I have my end of term exams for my online classes on Tuesday and Wednesday, so I get to study all weekend!
This is where I stop to breathe. :)