Friday, May 17, 2013

Comedy of Errors all the way home

Our last day in paradise started well. 
It was sunny.
Jeff and I found rash guards that didn't make us look fat and they kept the sun from making our sunburns hurt.  (Score!)

Hanalei Bay...our new favorite spot on earth.

It's such a pretty beach.
This is a famous pier that is featured in the movie, "South Pacific."  Sadly, it is being refurbished so my photo of it included trucks, ladders and other building materials.  Gah!

                                                   "I wanna go baaack..." (insert whining)

 Unfortunately, the water was pretty flat.  There were some waves big enough to surf, but we had to wait quite awhile between each one.
 Molly and Chloe couldn't wait to surf again!
These two...not so much!
And she's up!  Go Chloe!
Molly had a blast!

I have no more pictures of surfing because I had to get in the water and help but SaraGrace, Zoey and Jordan all did some surfing.

All too soon, it was time to go back and pack up.  There were some pretty sad faces in my car on the way to the airport.  I heard the kids in the back saying, "Are you crying?"   "Don't cry because if you do I'll start crying."
Yeah...we all felt like crying.

And from then on, the trip began to unravel.

Our rental cars were supposed to be returned to the airport with empty gas tanks.  Problem was that mine was almost empty and we had a 30 minute drive to the airport.  I told Jeff that I thought I should get a little bit of gas but he waved me off and said I would make it.  Why spend the $10?

Well...I made it to within SIGHT of the airport.
And ran out of gas.
We had planned to get there in time to grab dinner.
Instead, Jeff spent the extra time trying to find a gas station.  Which he did.  But they didn't have a gas can.
So he went looking for a hardware store.  He found one.  They were closing.
He begged.  He pleaded that it was an emergency.  They relented and sold him a 1 gal. can.  For $15.  (Glad we saved that $10 not putting gas in the car!)
We eventually made it to the airport.

In the meantime, my phone completely died.  Would not work AT ALL.
WHAT?!?!?!?  Grrrrr.....

The first flight went fine.  Our seats were rotten (back row) but at least some of us were sitting together and the others were sitting in twos.  Second flight, our seats were all over the place.  Three of us had to sit in single, middle seats.  I sat behind SaraGrace and Kate and part way through the flight, Katie's little face peered between the 2 inch gap in the seat and she said, "I barfed."
Please tell me she didn't say what I think she said.
"I barfed," she said.
I craned to see up into her seat and saw that she had a barf bag in her lap. Good girl!
Sure enough...she had barfed.
"What do I do with it?" she asked.
After seeing that she had daintily puked into the bag, we were able to dispose of it when the flight attendant came by.
As we were deplaning, she got sick again and used her bag like a champ.  We took several barf bags with us in case she got sick in the van.  She didn't.  I think she was motion sick because she has been fine since then.  The kids did SO WELL on all the flights.  I was so proud of them.  They had to sit by strangers and away from mommy and daddy and they were just brave and did it. 

You know how parents who are leaving a teenager home alone for a few days will make comments like, "I hope he doesn't burn the house down while we're gone," or "I hope the house is still standing when we get back,"?

As we got into the waiting van, Jeff ominously said, "I have to tell you something so you can process it on the way home."
"Taylor just called to tell me that the front porch caught on fire and there has been some damage."

It took us 90 minutes to get home from Boston, so I had plenty of time to process.   When we pulled up, Taylor was sitting outside waiting for us...looking rather terrified.
The porch looked like this:
Taylor painted over all the blackened wood in an attempt to make it look better but alas....he used interior paint.  So all that white that you see was painted by Taylor.  You can see some black on the decking material and underneath the porch it is completely black.
Our builder came and looked it over this morning and said we were 'very lucky' that our entire house didn't burn down.  We know it was God who protected us!

As we talked to our neighbors, we got the full story.  The fire started in the afternoon at the time that the school bus was pulling up to drop kids off.  The driver saw the fire and wouldn't let kids off the bus.  Parents were waiting and one ran to the neighbor to tell her to call 911.  Then the parent went to see if Taylor was at home.  He was.  And blissfully unaware.  She ran around to the back of the house to find an open door and came bursting into the house yelling for Taylor to get out.  He jumped up and joined the neighbor who had pulled our hose out.  Unfortunately, our front spigot was turned off for the winter so it didn't work.  The neighbor ran and got buckets of water from her house.  Taylor ran the hose around to our back spigot, which WAS thankfully working.  He sprayed the fire and got it out before the firemen arrived.  Our neighbor said it was a good thing because it took the fire department 20 minutes to get there.  She said, "If we had to wait for the fire department, I don't think you would have had a house left.  The fire was moving so fast."  She and her husband both wanted us to know that Taylor had been 'an angel' all week, taking out the trash, mowing the law, walking the dog, etc. and they felt so bad for him because he was so upset.  They said if he hadn't sprung into action, the house would have been gone.  To which I said, "but if he hadn't been careless in the first place, there wouldn't have been a fire."  hahaha

At any rate....we are VERY thankful that it wasn't worse....that we still have a house...and no one was hurt.  Taylor has always been the kid the family voted, "most likely to burn down a house."  He is always messing with flamable things.  Hopefully, he learned a valuable lesson.  He was very shaken up--to say the least.  The firemen were all ribbing him and saying, "How are you going to explain THIS to your parents?"

We could see that he was already beating himself up enough and didn't need us to pile on, so we just looked things over and listened to him relive it over and over.  He assured us he would pay for the damages and hopefully, as he shoulders the burden of paying for it, it will teach him to be more careful in the future.

We are just so very thankful that we didn't come home to our house being gone.  If not for the neighbor alerting Taylor, the fire would have been out of control before he could have done anything.



Lori said...

OH MY. My goodness gracious. Well now, that is one whopper of a blog post!

I was feeling desperately jealous of you earlier this week...but suddenly, that has changed. LOL

I am sooooo glad that you guys are home safely in a still-standing house. Oh my.

That is one vacation you will truly NEVER forget. EVER.

Sally-Girl! said...

Wow!!! What a story!!! Glad you had a great vacation and glad you came home to our HOME!!!

Tesseraemum said...

Well, you couldn't just have a trip that was picture perfect! What would your family talk and laugh about years from now?!!
So, how exactly did the fire start?:)

Musings from Kim K. said...

A vacation of a life time and a return home that you will never EVER forget. Thank goodness everything turned out as well as it did. Have fun with laundry and settling back in.

Chris said...

Wow! makes our teen needing to explain the dent in dad's truck(happened while we were away for a weekend) seem very mild. Glad things weren't worse!

Rebecca Lobb said...

This place looks out of this world!

Manohar singh Jodhpur said...

I stood still, vision blurring, and in that moment, I heard my heart break. It was a small, clean sound, like the snapping of a flower's stem.
Wedding sarees

P. Preston said...

How did the fire even happen? It was outside, so I'm failing to see how he could have been "careless"? Did he DO something to set the fire or was it a freak of nature? You could have been at home, inside, blissfully unaware and your house could have gone up too! Just trying to understand? If he didn't cause the fire, I hope you werent discounting his quick action in saving your home!!

On the other hand, if he was doing something that caused the fire, thats another story!!