Bil Browning

A (Not So) Funny Thing Happened on the Way to Christmas

Filed By Bil Browning | December 27, 2012 3:00 PM | comments

Filed in: Living
Tags: death in the family, Indiana blizzard, Nancy Hawksworth, three wise men, unexpected travel

So far my holidays haven't remotely gone like I'd planned. How did yours go?

I'd mentioned that we were going to a friend's home on Christmas Eve for a small party and planned on following up an excellent evening with a Jewish Christmas - eating Chinese food and going to see Les Miserables in the theater with friends. We were saving money since times have been tight.

bigstock-Three-Magic-Kings-11371763.jpgBut on Christmas Eve we woke up to the news that our daughter's mother had passed away in her sleep the night before following a long and complicated relationship with prescription pill addiction and abuse. Paige, in a most unfortunate turn of events, was the person who found the body.

We flew back to Indiana on Christmas Day - complete with three delays and a long layover. While we made it back home, we flew into the beginning of a blizzard that's had the state shut down since. Since the storm was just starting, we drove an hour south after landing to Jerame's hometown and met Paige at Jerame's brother's house for a quick get together. That night the snow started - and just kept coming.

There's a new boutique hotel in town so we decided to stay there. The heat didn't work for the room, but it was still warm enough so we didn't complain. The next morning though, we found a big bedbug on the blanket and noticed the little blood spots on the sheets. Needless to say, our room was comped for the night, but now we're paranoid about bringing home some undesirables.

We weren't able to see Paige at all yesterday; there was no driving in the wintery mess. Our flight for this afternoon was canceled as well - they're still cleaning up after the snow here and the storm was moving toward the northeast - exactly where we were flying into Philly and then on to Baltimore before making it back home by train to DC. Our new flight out is on Saturday evening now. Obviously, we changed hotels.

Today it looks like we'll be able to get to see Paige and the rest of Jerame's family. We plan on driving back up to Indianapolis late tonight and staying my best friend, Josh, to save some money on hotel rooms and rental car fees. (Ever try to get a rental car during a blizzard at the Indy airport where the rental car fees and taxes are extraordinarily expensive? We have the highest tax on rental cars in the nation - 15% and they're trying to raise it to 17%. Our rental fee for an SUV is over $800 alone.) And since we've had to extend the rental - the cost only continues to grow; throw in the cost of emergency plane tickets, the hotel costs, etc and it's become quite an unexpected chunk of change.

Plus, since we're in Indiana this week instead of DC, I couldn't get the needed bloodwork done before my heart ablation, so now it's been rescheduled for mid-January. I know it's not that big of a procedure, but it still stresses me out to wait for it to happen.

Oh well, in the grand scheme of things, everything could be worse. I'm trying to keep that in mind as my nerves gets frazzled and my patience wears thin.

If posts continue to be slower than usual on the site this week, please be forgiving. It's been an unusual week. By this point, I just want to be able to support our daughter and other things just aren't as important.

(Three wise men graphic via Bigstock)


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