I was very fortunate and surprised that my parents and Haley flew out to Missoula to meet Ale and me (/ make sure that we were still alive). We didn’t have cell service for the 5 days leading up to the visit, so I was a little surprised to see a little silver car filled with people I love, honking and cheering as we coasted down 12. We were coming off the Lolo Pass, so we had plenty of speed and PLENTY of scenery to keep us overwhelmed with happiness. The little silver car almost put me over the top; it was all too wonderful! If I didn’t have a dirty song come on my playlist and snap me out of the emotional moment, I probably would have been in tears. We pulled off to the side of the road and we hugged and shared stories and did a brief catch up, ect ect. Then my mom offered to put some of our bags in the car, so we could ride with more ease down to Missoula. Ale refused saying she had too much pride. I think I was just too lazy to unbungee the goods and now that Ale was not putting any bags in, I guess I didn’t really have a choice. Thanks Ale.
We would soon come to regret that decision as we hit major head winds on the home stretch and our bags acted like sails slowing us down even more. By the time we reached Missoula, we were ecstatic to get to the Holiday Inn and shower and lie down before dinner. The restaurant choice and food and everything about that night was awesome! (sidenote for those that have not traveled with my family: food is a huge deal for us and we really make an effort to find the most delicious food everywhere we go.) I was so happy to be back with my family and laughing at all the things we laugh at and just being in their company. Not that I don’t love the 24-7 bonding time I get with Ale… but the change was good and I think we both appreciated it.
The next couple of days flew by, some of the highlights included: major REI shopping, world’s slowest river rafting trip, road trip games on the way to Glacier, exciting moments on the way up to Logan Pass, the hike in Logan Pass, and hang out time with Haley.
Major REI shopping: I bought a tent, a titanium spork, a platypus water thing (for emergencies), some wool shorts (because I figured I have every other article of clothing in wool, so might as well complete the set), and as many peanut butter chocolate chip pro bars as I could carry.
World’s slowest rafting trip: My mom, who loves adventures and likes to be active and always doing things on vacation planned this rafting trip. Unfortunately, the last time she had been rafting was years and years ago on class 5 rapids down the American River with my dad. She remembers everyone getting thrown from the raft and herself holding on for her life in the bottom of the raft hanging on with white knuckles. With this in mind, she booked the scenic route for our family in Missoula. We ended up floating for what seemed like 8 hours in 100 + degree weather. No one wanted to offend my mom by complaining, so we all graciously thanked her as we got into the car at the end of the trip. She responded with “that was FRICKEN BORING!!!!” haha and that’s why I love my mom.
Road trip games on the way to Glacier: This included some intense moments of “would you rather…” where we learned a lot about each other. I can’t go into detail here, because that would be breaking the rules of the game. All I can say is that some people are more sick and twisted then they appear.
Exciting moments on the way up to Logan Pass: As we drove up the windy terrifying road to Logan Pass, we had a couple of exciting moments where one or more of the passengers may or may not have wet their pants. The pant wetting actually occurred after the uncontrollable laughing (I’m talking about the kind where you are laughing so hard that you can’t breath and then you think maybe you are going to throw up, and then you tell yourself, “it’s not that funny, stop laughing, not worth the pain, stop it stop it”) that came after the shockingly loud screams that came after the aggressive stops at cliff’s edge that my dad decided to make for some photo ops. Well done padre. Always keeping everyone on their toes.
Hike in Logan Pass: Once we got to Logan Pass and changed our pants as necessary, we hopped out of the car and started the trek towards the mountain. It was absolutely unbelievable up there. It was gorgeous in every direction you looked and there were snow patches in 70 degree weather, which was something I had never seen. There were waterfalls, mountain goats, marmots, bears (jk, we were looking but didn’t find any), and many other magnificent things. I felt like I was in a magic fairy tale. We took lots of pictures (another thing my family likes to do), which Ale loved. Jk, Ale hates picture taking, so she explored on her own for a bit. Haha, sorry Ale.
Hang out time with Haley: This was my favorite part of the visit. I fricken love love love my little sister, and it was sooooo good to see her and get to hang out! She is hilarious, generous, smart (best at the “in grandmother’s attic game”) and so much fun. It is amazing how time apart from her (and my other sisters) makes me appreciate them so much more!
ps no time to edit, so the family members that were mentioning my grammar and spelling problems (you know who you are), please feel free to edit and send me the corrections 😉