Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Sayonara Bruder

Today, for the second time in my life, I watched one of my kids walk onto a plane all by themselves. The first time it was little five year-old Rose. We were heading to Beijing and she was heading to Boise.

This time the child is older, but heading much farther away. Bruder is currently 5 hours and 10 minutes into his flight to Japan, with 6 hours and 17 minutes to Tokyo, but who's counting. He'll be staying with our good friends, the Fry family and will have a wonderful experience. I fully expect him to see the sights, eat some sushi, learn about the culture, and (knowing the Frys) come home an Eagle Scout.

Since he was flying solo, we got him "unaccompanied minor" status so we could walk him to the gate. He was horrified when we checked in and he was given a bright red United badge to wear prominently on his chest. Somehow (hmmm, how did it happen?) it was lost between check-in and gate. The gate agent asked him about his badge. While Bruder stammered and stuttered, he was given yet another bright red badge. If the badge makes it off the plane, somewhere on his person, I'll be shocked.

Cholita was all smiles while we waited for the boarding call.

But her mood changed rapidly when Bruder got into line without her.

"I'm going too!" she screamed.

"Bruder! Bruder! Come back!"
If he thought the red badge made him rather conspicuous, the hysterical screaming toddler didn't exactly help him blend into the woodwork, or accordion walkway, whichever the case may be.
I wonder if he could still hear her when he got on the plane?

As Bruder's chariot to Japan pulled away, Cholita waved and said, "Oh, this is horrible."

But she rallied on the airport train.
Sayonara Bruder! We miss you already.


Kelly said...

Wow! How exciting for Bruder. Poor Cholita. And hey, you need to change Roses name again...


CSIowa said...

That is fabulous! I have a 13-year-old Star scout and would like nothing more than to send him to Japan for a few weeks. Do your friends take in strangers?

Seriously, we put our oldest on a direct flight to grandma's when she was ten. Then we put her on an international flight to the other grandparents when she was fifteen. I'm wondering when our other children are going to notice that they are being travel-deprived. Hopefully not until we get back out of training and into a real job!

I hope Bruder has a marvelous time!

Laura L. said...

Oh little Cholita is so adorable, even when crying. So cute.

You're a brave mom for letting Bruder go to Japan. I've sent a couple of mine off that way, out of the country about 3 times. My heart always misses them more, just knowing they're so far away.
How awesome that he will be an Eagle Scout.

Brooke said...

Geesh, now I'm feeling really wimpy because I still can't bear the idea of letting my nearly 13-year old fly alone to Utah. Sigh. Maybe when he's 15 . . . :-)