Saturday, Jan 28.: Waiting for Silme
OK, it is 28 January 2012 and it is 5:45 pm and I am waiting at the arriving passenger area where I always wait for Erik. Planeload after planeload of people keeps arriving. I keep checking the board for arrivals and departures and it suddenly jumps from “On Time” to “Arrived”. I wait through two more piles of people and no Silme. Finally I ask someone at a ticket counter. International flights arrive at an obscure spot buried behind the luggage carousels. OK, I am supposed to know this? I run down there and arrive at a weird seating area with some very tall, very secure doors and wait with a lot of other people who look as “anticipatory” as I look . . . I guess. Me? I am about to jump out of my skin with excitement. All the years of looking and pushing (yes I have pushed at times since 1982) focuses on this one event: The arrival of the first cousin in our family from Norway to visit our family in the USA since 1886.
So, who is counting? Me. I waited and watched as the doors opened like a Transporter from the set of Star Trek and person after person “materialized” through those doors. Would I recognize her? Would she recognize me? How do I greet her? Do I hug her? Shake her hand? Turns out she likes to sit in the plane until the last passenger has deplaned. Then she makes her entrance. Thanks Silme.
It turned out to be so easy. She was grinning at me because I had missed her arrival. She was all the way down the ramp (20 feet from me) while I was talking to a guy who recognized my tee shirt with “woodturning” on it. He was, it turned out, taking a class from our teachers when we learned woodturning. How did I recognize her? She had the same silly grin on her face that I did. I got my hug and then awkwardly asked Silme to let me say one more thing to a fellow woodturner. Then, taking her suitcase I proudly led her to the car and took her home to my family (my wife Patty and two dogs and four cats).
We were off on a four-day adventure of showing her our home, our hometown, our friends, our favorite place to eat (Gulf Rim in Hillsborough, NC), my tiger friends Rajah and Kaela (Carolina Tiger Rescue in Pittsboro, NC), and our woodturning “hobby”. Sadly, we had to hand her off to another friend in Charlotte for her trip to Florida for more friends. Eventually she would wind up experiencing my son Erik’s adventure in southwest Texas in his 1959 Ford Ranch Wagon and 1951 Kozy Coach Trailer. We did not want to let her leave. This will happen again.