We wait for a plane all day, but there's never an opening in Cascade. We hunker down for another night. It's okay. I allowed an extra day for this.
Saturday, December 20th
11:00 AM: We get word over the radio at Taylor Ranch that a plane is coming for us. We haul our stuff to the airstrip and drain our cabin for the winter.
12:00 PM: Plane arrives. We unload the contents and haul them up to the cabin, including a new recliner, then load our stuff, say goodbye, and leave. We have to fly through some clouds and there's a little turbulence, but it's not bad.
1:00 PM: Arrive in Cascade. Unload plane, talk to Carol about bills. Pilot drives us to the medical center to drop off blood sample, to the post office to drop off mail, and to the gas station, which is where the bus will pick us up at 2:15.
2:15 PM: No bus.
3:00 PM: No bus.
4:00 PM: No bus.
4:30 PM: I call Greyhound and am informed that all of their Idaho routes have been canceled due to the weather. I flail around. Tyler calls his grandmother and asks, again, if anyone can get us in Cascade. At the same time, the gas station clerk cheerily informs us that she called and the bus is now in New Meadows, will be meeting another bus in McCall to offload some passengers, and then coming to Cascade. What?
5:15 PM: Bus arrives. AJ is confused. Bus is full of college students and there are almost no seats. We ask if we can get on. Bus driver tells us to wait outside while the passengers use the bathroom and get food, because he doesn't know if there will be room for us. Bus driver gets a smoke.
5:25 PM: Bus reloads. Drive comes over to us and says "Look. I'm tired. I'm cranky. I don't want to mess with money or tickets or anything. Just get on the bus and find two seats. I never saw you." We board the bus.
7:00 PM: Bus arrives in Boise. We get off at the bus station and call. Uncle Michael is dispatched to pick us up and take us straight to the airport (and give us our Christmas present).
7:00-7:30PM: We wait on the street for our ride while a man with cigarettes, sour apple pucker, and "ADD and bipolar schizophrenia and I ain't got no meds!" chatters at us and tells us about his various tattoos and prison sentences.
7:30 PM: Michael arrives and drives us to the airport. We check in. The person at the ticket desk looks glum and tells us that Sea-Tac has been turning away about 50% of its flights.
8:00 PM: We wait at the airport. We eat snacks. I am too exhausted to read or sew or play on my laptop, and too overstimulated to sleep. I pass the time with a cowlike stare.
8:00 PM-10:30 PM: Flight is delayed and delayed, both ours and the Seattle flight that was supposed to leave before ours. Their flight is finally canceled and everyone crowds the downstairs ticket desk. Ours is canceled minutes later. We wait in line for about 30 minutes while a ticket agent comes down the line and cheerfully suggests we call Horizon's toll free reservation number. I do. The number refers us to a second number. The second number announces that they are too busy and hangs up on me.
11:00 PM: The upstairs ticket desk in the main terminal opens up to help people. Everyone near the end of the line (including us) scurry upstairs. We are first in line after the two agents are taken. We wait for 20 minutes.
11:20 PM: Greasy kid in the leather duster several people behind us starts screaming at the top of his lungs and hitting things with his umbrella. I go downstairs and get our checked luggage back.
11:30 PM: We are rebooked for the earliest available flight, which is the next day (Sunday) at 5:25 PM. We leave the airport and get a taxi. Because the delay is due to weather, Horizon will not put us up for the night.
12:00 AM: Taxi drops us off at Grandma Shirley's house. Tyler knocks and rings the doorbell, but she cannot hear us. Or she does hear us and is maybe calling the police?
12:15 PM: We gather our stuff and walk two blocks through the snow to Michael's house. Tyler rings the doorbell several times. Nobody hears us. I start to cry because I have completely used up my reserves for the day and I am absolutely exhausted, we have no access to a phone, and I am sort of hoping the police will come because then I can sleep in jail.
12:30: We decide waking up one person in the middle of the night is better than waking up five, and walk back to Grandma Shirley's house. Tyler rings the doorbell, knocks, and calls through the door until she lets us in. "You poor dears!" she exclaims. Hot chocolate and showers ensue.
Then I slept for 12 hours.
So, that's the deal. Still in Boise, but at least safe with family. I have never, and I mean NEVER, had to fight so hard to get every leg of a journey to work.