Saturday, March 26, 2011

Remember that One Time When We Stayed Up Way Too Long?

I don't have the mental agility at this point to go into all the details of the story (though I did record them in my journal), plus I don't want to bore you with tales of waiting in lines for hours on end.  Here are the essentials.
Ellie and I, after much deliberation and prayer on the part of Ben and I, decided to take advantage of the "voluntary departure of dependents" being offered by the base to come back to the States for a few weeks. We aren't terribly concerned for our safety in Japan, especially since we are 200 miles from the broken nuclear reactor.  It was a ridiculously tough decision to leave Ben behind (he is "essential to the mission" after all).  But three things compelled us; 1) peace of mind for our parents, 2) better safe than sorry, and 3) we don't really plan on coming back for a visit until the summer of 2012. 
So at 2 am on Tuesday morning in Japan we waited in lots and lots of lines, got bussed to Yokota Air Force Base, and finally took off for the USA around 1 pm (note: it took longer to get from base into the air than it actually did to fly here!).  And may I just make a plug for the Air Force here; they are amazing.  They had treats and snacks and Red Cross volunteers to watch our kids and airmen and Marines to haul our luggage and car seats for us.  If ever I have a child that wants to join the armed forces I'll give my okay if it's with the Air Force.

Waiting in line to get on the plane.

The flight was definitely the longest of my life.  It was over 50% children.  Enough said.  Ellie did pretty great though, better than the poor little baby across the aisle from us (bless that mother, she had two other kids with her as well). 

Nothing is really playing, she just like to pretend and be like mommy.
Once we landed there were more lines and we even got interviewed by the local press! Then we hopped a bus to the Sacramento airport and took a flight to Dallas, finally arriving at 7:30 pm on Tuesday.  So all told we spent 30 hours traveling! We were pooped. I joke that Tuesday was so great we wanted to do it twice.  But seriously, no. But we are here and are so thankful for our wonderful family for letting us crash with them.  Ellie's warming up to everyone.  Here's the proof!


  1. Yay! Glad you made it back safe. WOW. I can't imagine being on a plane with more than 50% kids. I hope your headphones were noise canceling :)

  2. Well hey if you guys visit UTAH let us know, I'd love James to meet Ellie. Sorry about what happened to you guys. Funny that you mention that thing about the Air Force because Stephen has decided he wants to join, he's just got to get into shape a bit for that. Do you guys live on base. I'll have to e-mail you with some Q's. Good luck w/ everything.