I’m Comin’ Home

Posted by mwallach on February 3, 2011 in My Kids, New Yorkers |

Dear That’s Life,

It is nice to go away, but it is even nicer to come home.

Getting home, however, was not as easy as it should have been for many travelers who flew the coop this winter break.  The snowstorm which hit the area impeded the return of many travelers, including the Wallachs and the other family with whom we were vacationing in Florida.  Fully aware of the airport closures, delays and cancellations that already plagued thousands of airline passengers, we were prepared to deal with whatever came our way once we arrived at the airport. 

We never got that far.  The twelve passenger van we had rented for our two families (a whole other story, for a rainy day) had been packed to the gills.  We were loaded and ready to head home, kids buckled in their car seats.  An assortment of snacks had been packed for the flight which, according to the website, was still on time and had a gate assignment.  And you know how it is – when you are mentally prepared to go home, it is time to go.  We were about a mile away from where we were staying, however, when an email came out informing us that our flight had been cancelled. 

We returned back to where we were staying and began to unload the van.  The kids jumped for joy as if it was a snow day, which, in effect, it was.  My husband began his mental plan of attack as to how he was now going to handle getting us new flights home.  And I, having already been set to go back to New York, would not get out of the van. 

It took an hour and a half before our itinerary was revised and we ended up getting new return flights – set to leave three days later because we now had to stay for shabbos.  Texts and emails began rushing back and forth between friends and family in similar situations.  One friend was in the airport at the gate when her flight, which had originally just been delayed, was cancelled.  Sitting amongst many other frum Jews, she quickly made friends with another couple who also had to get back to New York and could not wait for a flight back days later.  She and her husband ended up renting a car with that couple, whom they had only just met, and drove through the night.  Twenty hours later, they were in the Five Towns.  Let’s just say, they are now good friends.

Our extra vacation time was fun and made even more enjoyable when my friend sent me a picture of my house, covered in snow, telling me I was better off where I was.  The weather had really warmed up for our second, and unexpected, shabbos in Florida and we all enjoyed basking in the sun in short sleeves.  It did not take long at all, however, for my children to remember from whence they came.  You can take the kids out of New York but you cannot take New York out of the kids.  As soon as we walked out of the terminal at LaGuardia and my children saw all of the white which had caused such trouble, I got the following request from my daughter:  Mommy, when we get home, can we play in the snow?

Ahh.  It is good to be home.

MLW

On a personal note:

My dear, dear Michael – do not think your leaving is going unnoticed.  It has been a pleasure working with you over the last two years and I feel fortunate to call you my friend.  The J-Star has been the beneficiary of your ace reporting and your leadership. No matter where the road of life takes you, and you are only beginning your journey, know for sure that your talent, dedication and menschlichkite will always serve you well and should make you proud. 

All my best,
MLW

As seen in The Jewish Star 2/23/11 in most of its entirety

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