Monday, November 12, 2007

what a weekend

Well of course we woke up Thursday morning to snow. Great for the kids, not so great for driving down to Regina. We had packed most of the stuff the previous night so we could leave earlier. Of course, Keziah slept later and Steve lost his letter of call (with important information on it). By the time we actually left PA, it was 11:30 am. We were doing about 80 km/hr 'cos the roads were pretty icy as we left PA heading for Melfort. The landy can't go much faster as it starts shaking and making all kinds of scary noises. Steve went first and the kids and I followed in the van. We had our walkie talkies to communicate. It was slow movin' but otherwise good.

Then all of a sudden I see the Landy swerve. Steve regains control. Then he swerves again this time spinning around and going directly into oncoming traffic before veering off into the opposite ditch. I hold my breathe and slow the van down slightly. He regains control and drives about 500m in the ditch before attempting to come back onto the highway. He can't get back on the road, so he has to hop out and switch to 4x4, and then he easily makes it back up, returns to the right side of the road and pulls over onto the side. I jump out of the van, which is already pulled over waiting for him, and run over to him.

"I could be dead," he says. We nervously laugh, return to our vehicles and continue down the highway.

Luckily the ice didn't last long. It sooned turned to slush and by Melfort, was dry. But that doesn't mean we went much faster. After a pee break on the side of the road, Callah tells me she has to go poop. Great. We pull over again and try on the side of the road. She can't do it.

"I need a toilet," she says. Great.
"Can you hold it till we find a toilet?" I ask.
"Yes," she says.

Spalding is just ahead so we cruise down mainstreet until we come to the Spalding Cafe. Saved by the toilet.

A few hours later we are finally making some progress and are coming up the Qu'Appelle Valley hill, Landy just smoking like crazy. I'm about to buzz Steve on the wackie talkie and make a wisecrack about being an "ozone killer" when an RCMP pulls between us, lights flashing and signals Steve to pull over. My heart is once again in my throat, thinking, great...this is just what we need. When the RCMP looks my way, waves and gets back in his truck. I found out later that he was just wondering if Steve was okay being as the Landy was smoking diesel so much. Steve introduced himself, of typical Steve fashion, saying that he was on his way to depot and maybe he'd see the RCMP around. They laughed, hugged and shared their treasured moments (well okay, it was more of a chuckle and wave) instantly bonding.

Anyway the long of it all, 5 hours and some after leaving PA, we arrived safely in Regina.

Ha, and that was only the first day. Without going into a novel here, Friday Steve went for his signing in, got his room assignment, dropped his stuff off, picked up his bedding and 2"thick "welcome packet", went for a "quick" 45 minute tour, and then we drove around for an hour looking for a good place to eat that didn't have a 30 min. wait eventually winding up at the first place we checked out. We finished off the evening watching American Gangster. Hats off to Denzel. Then I cried for a few hours in Steve's arms thinking about the inevitable separation in less than 48 hours.

The rest of the weekend was spent with family playing, swimming and of course, watching football. I did pretty good Sunday when I dropped Steve off. Only a few buckets o' tears were shed and then I went back to my parents and we all had a stiff drink.

The ride home was so awesome (Thank you God!!) the older two slept 3/4 of the way and I kept feeding Keziah arrowroot cookies to keep her other words, she was good too. I'm okay so long as I don't think about the possible 6 weeks before we see him again. If I get too far ahead of myself, my chest feels like it's shrinking and my eyes automatically tear up. When we got home to a cold, empty house I felt sick to my stomache and I still kinda do. I feel a bit better tho' after talking to Steve a bit. He's doing good. A little bored (all he had were meetings all day and they're planned for tomorrow too) but excited that he was issued his plastic gun and belt today. He's in charge of the troop dress code. Which means that he gets to decide what they all have to wear...his troop will be the one in plaid! :) And he was asked to be the troop leader, which he's unsure about. If he takes it on, I know he'll do awesome.

Anyway, I still gotta work out (don't want to slack off already) and I think it's going to be a rough nite (all the kids have colds from the pool).

Despite it all, I'm glad to be home.