Tuesday, December 11, 2012
The Long and Snowy Road... RIP Virgil
God bless... my uncle Virgil, who passed away on December 1. I made the pilgrimage to Minnesota in the winter, as befits the niece of a great and unforgettable man.
I had 3 days and 4 nights with family. It was restorative. And Jon's homemade stout was memorable. For the first time in a long time, I saw people I went to high school with. One of my best friends, who I have stayed in touch with first by letter and then by email... and have not seen in some 35 years was there, and we had the opportunity to talk and catch up.
Funerals, particularly for our cherished elders (Virge was 91), can be life-affirming; and so I have found it with my family. I went past my father's home...hand built, with my dad doing about 90% of the labor, and was encouraged by the beautiful condition of the yard and buildings that the lady who purchased it from us in 1987, had maintained.
Of course, all that is well does not end well. Starting at midnight on the eve before I left, my brother's city got 13 inches of snow. We braved about 7 inches when we decided to try and get me 75 miles to the Mpls airport. It took 3 hours, and there were 14 cars off the road. Once in the Hubert Humphrey terminal, I learned that SW had 0 planes on the ground, and that it was likely I would be there for 24 hours (and brave the onslaught of the Chicago Bear fans, defeated by the Vikings, and then defeated when they tried to fly back to Chicago that night...hundreds of them).
When the snow stopped around 8 p.m. in Mpls, I got a text that my 2nd plane, in Milwaukee, had been delayed out by 6 hours. I checked, and sure enough I could get the only flight of the day that left to Milwaukee. There was another 2 hour wait in Milwaukee, but we were airborne at last, and I arrived to ghost city Tampa airport at 3:45 a.m. It took another hour to discover they'd lost my bag, file a report, and then hang around until a misbegotten taxi made the loop and picked me up.
Home again, home again, sans possessions, at 4:45 a.m. Sigh. Minnesota in the winter. Not good.