Last week I was in Louisiana for about the worst reason you can ever have to go out of town. My dad’s brother, my favorite uncle and my godfather passed away. He was an incredible man who lived a great life and I love him very much.
I can’t really talk much about it or him yet, but I hope that I will soon.
Right now, I’m going to just tell you a little about the trip.
I picked up a rental car on Saturday morning. They said I'd get a Kia Rio, or something similar. The Kia wasn't there when I showed up so they were going to give me something else but then realized it didn't have bluetooth or cruise control. Whoops. "We've got a Prius." they told me. Well dang, "I'll definitely take that." I fell in love with that car so quickly I might even take on a car payment the next time we need a car.
That day I drove 4 hours to see my sister and her family in Tulsa.
That night my brother in law grilled some burgers for us, and after it got dark we had a dance party around the fire. It was chilly in Kansas, but 4 hours south in Tulsa the weather was great.
I spent all day Sunday hanging out with those guys, and then Monday morning I took off for Louisiana. It's a 9 hour drive, but with my iPod full of podcasts, and a Spotify playlist called "Drive", it didn't seem bad at all.
Most of my family showed up Tuesday around lunch time. We are all huge fans of La Madeleine, a great restaurant that's only in the south (I just looked and they have one in Tulsa!). When we realized there was one right by our hotel, we knew where we'd be eating. A lot. We took a huge group there for lunch. Yum!
Soon after that we had to get changed for the wake. And after the wake? We went back to La Madeleine for a late night dinner.
The next day was the funeral, followed by all day family time, which was comforting and quite necessary. Family helps so much when you're dealing with a loss like that.
The weirdest thing about family funerals is that you’re together with people you love a lot and don’t see enough, but you’d all really rather not be there. As everyone was making plans for who was staying where, when everyone was leaving and how everyone was getting there, I’d find myself being happy that one or another person was going and that I’d get to see them -- and then I’d remember why and it would be sad again.
I had thought I might drive to Orlando after we all left LA. It’s only a day's drive, my brother’s there, my friends are there. But the hurricane was coming. At first I thought oh i’ll just wait till it passes and then go. But then it looked so bad, and looked like it might circle around and head back to Florida. By the time it was over and Orlando ws fine, I was so tired of not deciding and had already made plans to get back home in my head, I decided to just wait. We're all heading there on the 26th so I really didn't need to go.
Saturday I spent most of the day with my family and left right after lunch for Tulsa. It was 93 degrees when I left Louisiana, and about 50 when I arrived in Tulsa. I trust I don't have to mention how I felt about that.
I got some more family time and then I drove home.
I really didn't take many pictures, or do anything except for spend time with my family. As I've told people who asked how it went, it was kinda horrible and kind of really nice, which is probably the best you can hope for.