Except that there was fog in Chicago. And when there's fog in Chicago, all US air traffic gets horribly snarled. Luckily things cleared up enough that we only had a 2 1/2 hour delay in Buffalo. Once airborne, I slept through a good chunk of both flights.
On the second flight, I changed my watch to my new time zone.
* * *
I had explained to Scooter the previous night that I would be coming in fairly early, telling him something along the lines of, "You'll wake up and play for a bit. Then you'll come to the airport and I'll be there before lunch."
We've been trying to be as explicit as possible with such explanations so that his expectations will be appropriate.
So of course, he understood exactly what I was telling him that time, and my flight ended up delayed.
Apparently when he woke up that morning, he immediately started playing, whereas usually he likes to go sit at the breakfast table with Grandma and Grandpa. Then at about 9:30 am, he started asking if they were going to the airport. Had my flight been on time, they would have left very shortly after.
So he was squirrelly all morning and started to disbelieve people when they said I'd be arriving soon. This was especially the case when Trillian and her brother were telling him they could see my gate from the waiting area. There was no plane there yet, and he was pretty sure they were just making that up anyway.
* * *
I came through one of the revolving doors at the airport, but not the one they were looking at. I was not very far away when I finally got their attention, so Scooter didn't have too far to run. A few steps, and he flung himself at me. I noticed as soon as I picked him up that he's gained some weight.
He went very quiet, I suspect a bit overwhelmed, and just smiled and hugged me. He wouldn't let me put him down for very long and never broke contact when I did.
* * *
Halfway back to Capital City, Scooter fell asleep, his hand still on my arm.
Trillian turned around from the front seat and told me two stories about how excited he was to see me again.
- The night before I came, he told her that they were "missing one more human." He listed the humans who were there and then said they needed to pick me up from the airport.
- Before leaving for the airport, Scooter insisted that his shirt be changed since he had gotten some breakfast on it. Then he wanted Grandma to brush his hair and lift him up to check in the mirror.
That I will not have to travel a significant distance any time soon has not quite registered yet. I am enough in Christmas mode that I can't quite comprehend that this isn't our usual two-week stopover. That when we do leave in two weeks or so, it will be to our house in Springfield, not to the airport. So that will be one more shift.
It is nice, however, to be sitting on the couch, listening to Scooter chat to his Grandma as she makes gluten-free sugar cookie dough, Uncle W. practicing his music in the background.
Happy holidays to everyone!