After Tom and his dad got a road plowed between the car and the highway, we set to work getting ready to leave for Portland on Wednesday morning. We had planned to leave Wednesday night after Tom got home from work, but he was able to take Wednesday off after having missed the first two days of the week. I am relieved for this good fortune.
We packed what we could before going to bed and finished the rest Wednesday morning. By 6:30 am we were on our way. Thomas drove and drove and drove. One point of fortune was that our departure now put us in Lakewood for a special treat at Mr. Sushi at the right time for lunch. We also made an important stop for a new car battery (guess they aren't as reliable after 5 years, and it had died already once) and snow chains, plus another place to look for something on my wishlist. For all our delays, we got underway as quickly as we could, but not quick enough.
Just west of Laramie, we could see a white serpent of clouds slithering around the foothills. Unfortunately, it wasn't a serpent so much as a blanket of blowing snow that extended beyond the Utah border. Rather than switch driving, Thomas kept his hands on the wheel, and I started using mine to count off Hail Mary's while I prayed decade after decade. There was more than one occasion that Thomas told me to close my eyes, but I saw enough - getting cut off by an empty cattle truck that blew so much snow up, we weren't sure which way was up was the worst. The one really humorous moment was driving back down an off ramp after someone took a leak. There was no on ramp, and we weren't ready to drive down an unknown route in the snow. It was dark, traffic was light - just wait for the headlights to go past!
We checked into a hotel room in Ogden, Utah around 12:30 am for seven hours before we began again, wandering around for a good cup of coffee and small bite. After an uneventful morning, we pulled into Boise for lunch and then finally switched driving. Way to go, Tom!! I enjoyed the beautiful scenery through eastern Oregon and pulled us into my sister's driveway about 6:30 pm. YEAH!! We made it!!
After a long sleep, we started to be a little more social. We paired off - Tom & Dad working on a grocery list and seafood chowder fro dinner; Mom & I off to celebrate our feast day with lunch, a visit to Cole and Jen, and a visit to Grandma and Grandpa and Grandma Schaller. Our first day ended with a family bash - Dad's special seafood chowder with almost everyone home (Nick was with his in-laws). In the theme of dinner, Oliver showed us his swimming legs on the table.