Southwest Tucson to Chicago December 13th

It is my last travel for the Association of Realtors for 2009 and the last for six weeks. It is not quiet full and we are going to be connecting at Midway Airport in Chicago. Originally, it was going to be a tight connection of 40 minutes, but we are gaining a lot of time with a tail wind at 39,000 feet.

I am in my favorite aisle seat, but this time we are in the front row so we can make the connection. My wife, Susan, is next to me and my son Ian is at the Window Seat. Tucson is a long way to go for a one day meeting, but the 2010 National Association of Realtors President wants to show off her home town. The meetings were productive and encouraging. The leadership team is really talented and accomplished.

Susan and Ian have joined me for the extra ‘personal day.’ They decided to go horseback riding. I on the other hand decided to do a long run in the 48 degree dry heat of the desert. They loved horseback riding. I loved the run. Solitary time by myself for 7.5 miles the day before the Tucson Marathon. It was special time and my best run of the year. Not sure why it was so awesome. The weather probably was a big contributing factor.

So we are flying Southwest as it is the only airline that has only one stop between Tucson and Providence. The flight leaves at 3:15 for Midway. This is particularly convenient as the Patriots game will be over before we get on the play. They need this win and they come through! It is great!

We get on the get on the play and settle in. It has been a relaxing couple of days that were much needed. December is always exhausting and this one would be no exception. Not sure how we fit as much as we do into one month.

The woman across the aisle from me finished the Tucson Marathon. It was her fifth one, four prior in Chicago, but she had hoped to qualify for Boston. The Boston MARATHON is still the ultimate, but for her today it was illusive. She did not qualify because the head wind was in her face the entire way. We talk about hydration and her rush to the airport to catch the ‘one Southwest flight to Boston. She shrugs and say not today, but there will be another day and another race. Oh how right she is.

My bride is pensive and immersed in her book. An avid reader, she consumes a couple every week. I am not as voracious. We had the best Thanksgiving we have ever had with two new health grandchildren: Nazare and Marie. Everything else is going well, but winter and its challenges are in front of us. Sometimes the warmth of the desert of winter re-enforces the reality of the cold of a New England Winter.

The man in the first row on the right is travelling with his elder mother. Some unfortunate person is between the two. He has had two rum and cokes although he acts as though it has been more. He and his mother continue to argue with the Asian man stoically between them. Susan says it reminds her of the movie Goonies. This guy will not shut up. It is ridiculous and very humorous. He knows more than his mom although she is not convinced. Fortunately, the tailwind is reducing the time in confinement to less than 3 hours. Know that this is just a playful bickering, but it is relentless. They do not agree on anything. They are at it again.

It reminds me of how fortunate I am. I am traveling with my wife of thirty years and my soul mate. Life has been very kind and very generous. She has been a great companion on our life’s path. We have been blessed with three great kids, an awesome family and amazing friends. Life has been, and continues to be very kind. Sometimes it is helpful to remember that. Today is one of those days. Hopefully tomorrow will be another just like today