Today has been one of the longest days of my life. After getting about 30 minutes of sleep this morning and breakfast at Waffle House, my parents and brother took me to the airport in Pensacola, FL at 4:30 am. Once everyone else got to the airport and got their boarding passes, we went through security with almost no problems (Amy was pulled to the side as usual) then boarded the plane. On the first flight, I sat next to Daniel Wattier and we had fun getting to know each other better. This was my first time flying and I must say I really enjoyed it (even turbulence, is that bad?). On the flight, there were two ladies, sisters actually, that were on their way to Utah to train for two weeks because they are opening a TCBY in Pensacola (if you live in the area, you should go check it out, they were nice). They had never been on a vacation together until now, so it was cool, to get to talk to them about our trip and theirs. They are tasting different kinds of frozen yogurt right now, I am kind of jealous.
When we landed in Houston, we had to almost literally run to our next flight because they had difficulty getting the doors open for us to get off of our first flight. But we did make it in time. We boarded and this time I sat next to Mr. Lane Keeton, and we enjoyed picking on each other the entire time that we were not sleeping. We landed in Amarillo, TX, got our shuttle and checked into the hotel all by 11:30. It felt like it should have been supper time and then to go sleep, but we still had a whole day left. When we got here, Mr. Carey was meeting us at the hotel around three, so we didn’t have a car or anything, but we knew we wanted to explore and we knew we were hungry. So we walked about a mile to a TexMex restaurant for lunch and it was REALLY good. Then we walked across the street to a flea market and it felt like we were walking through a market in Mexico, it was a very cool experience. On our walk back toward the hotel, we decided that we were becoming like a family, so we assigned roles: Josh is dad, Ashton is mom, and Amy, Ashlee, Alisha, Daniel, Hollie, Lane and myself are all their kids. We also decided that Mr. Carey was our Papa (but we haven’t told him that yet).
Since it was still only about two, we decided to walk in the other direction. We went to the American Quarter Horse Museum first and spent some time there. It is a really beautiful place, if you ever have the chance to and are interested in horses, I recommend that you go. After that we walked across the street to a Native American trading post and saw some very interesting things in there. After that, we walked back to the hotel because it was about time for Mr. Carey to be there. As we were walking in, we were stopped by a lady who asked if we were on the storm chasers trip. She then told us how she was going as well. She is a teacher at Appalachian State University, she has a little boy, and she is writing a book on natural phenomena which includes this trip. Hollie put it best, “you’re super mom!”
After we talked to her for a little while, we went inside to take a nap before our first safety meeting at 6. When we went to the meeting we got to meet the people in charge of the trip and the other team that would be joining us. After our meeting, we all went to the Big Texan for supper where we watched three people attempt to eat a 72 oz steak each and they all failed. On a positive note, I had the best steak I think I have ever had. Now we are all back at the hotel and ready for a much needed night of rest. Tomorrow we are driving five hours into New Mexico to look at the caves and other geo structure, and we are all very excited about that.