In May of 2007 my husband and I had a wonderful opportunity. We took an Alaskan cruise, and we had a wonderful time - after the first 20 hours or so! The cruise departed from Vancouver, British Columbia on a Saturday, so my husband took an early day off work on Friday so we could fly out on Friday afternoon.
At the airport everything went smoothly and we were put on the plane on time, only to be told the plane had a flat, and they were going to change the tire, but there was a thunderstorm comiing through and they couldn't change the flat until the storm passed. Okay. So we sat there, and sat there, and sat there some more. Watched the storm go by. Sat there some more. At last they got the tire fixed and cleared us for take off.
Because we were taking an afternoon flight, and because we left so late, we got into Minneapolis late. Did I mention this wasn't a direct flight? Oh, no! We had to change planes in Minneapolis to go on to Vancouver. They asked everyone who was staying in MN to let those of us who had connections off first. We told them what flight we needed to make, and they put us on one of those carts and just FLEW us through the airport. We were seated on the very back, a reverse-facing seat, and holding on for dear life! It was actually kind of fun!
We got to the gate and they were literally closing up the gate. I ran up and yelled "Stop that plane - we need to get on it!" (Honestly, that's what I said!) So they guy looked up at me with an 'it's almost midnight and you said what???' kind of look. But they checked the tickets and sure 'nuff we were supposed to be on that plane, and they let us on.
The flight to Vancouver was uneventful, but when we got down to baggage claim - you guessed it, NOTHING! Our luggage hadn't made the connection. I had my laptop bag and that had my books and jewelery and laptop in it - nothing else. We filed a claim and took a taxi to the hotel we had reserved. It was about 2 am by the time we got there, and we tried to get a little sleep, but neither of us got much that night.
That next morning we had some time before we had to head for the ship, so hubby decided to go out and walk around the area for a while. I stayed inside to listen for news from the airport rep. We had talked about it and prayed aobut it, and decided we weren't going to let having no luggage ruin our trip, so at the very worst we'd wait until we got to Ketchikan (our first stop) where we knew they had a WalMart and go shopping there.
In a while hubby came inside and said "There's a park right there behind the hotel, and you've got to go see it - it's gorgeous!" So I put on my clothes, grabbed the cell phone and we went to the park. And he was right! It was early spring in that area, and the azaleas, rhododendron, forget me nots and all kinds of things were in full bloom.
(The view of our hotel room from the park!)
The lady from the airline called. They hadn't found anything, but if it came in they would just put it on the truck to the ship if that was okay with us. It was, and we got ready and took a taxi to the ship. That taxi ride was another story altogether!
Anyway, we made it to the ship, found our cabin (thanks to a WONDERFUL sale we had a balcony!) and walked around the ship, had lunch and relaxed. Still no luggage! Eventually we heard something outside and opened the door to find one bag. Hubby's clothes.
A little while later I decided to go look around and see if one of our bags might be at the wrong place. Just as I opened the door, a man was about to knock on it from the other side. He thought our bag was at his room, directly across the ship. It was ours! Our shoes, coats and sweaters.
We decided if I needed clothes we could get them at WalMart, and started getting ready for the lifeboat drill. Literally, 30 seconds before they sounded the alert for the lifeboat drill, we heard a sound outside, and there - magically - was the last bag. We had all our clothes, praise the Lord! God does answer prayers, you know!
And we had a wonderful time on our cruise, and the couple of days afterward that we spent on Vancouver Island exploring.
The pictures you've seen throughout this post are from that park. I'll always remember it fondly, and always look back on the magical peace walking through the park gave us as we waited to hear about our luggage.
This was an incredible trip of the kind we rarely take. We are campers. We have a camper, and 95% (at least) of our travel is done in our truck with the camper hooked behind it, and the 'girls' rolled up in their blankets in the back seat. That makes the magical times we had even more special.
I sure hope you've enjoyed Floral Friday, and my tour of Minrou Park! Blessings Friends, have a great weekend! Becky