Yesterday morning I played for the funeral of Burrel Wooten, a 100 year old member at Ridglea United Methodist Church. My family and I grew up in that church family and seeing several old friends and getting to play in their beautiful sanctuary was a real treat.
Mary picked me up after the service and had a sandwich from Jimmy John’s ready for me to eat on the way to my final rehearsal at Brookhaven. My friend Debbie did an outstanding job stepping into my shoes at the piano and I was very relieved to know they were in such good hands. After rehearsal, Mary and I ate dinner at Terra in Las Colinas and then checked in at the Embassy Suites by the airport. For years, Mary has said she’d like to stay at this hotel. It is quite beautiful. It has 10 floors with a huge atrium in the middle with giant goldfish swimming in a man made stream complete with a waterfall.
We decided to splurge so it would be easier to get to the airport in the morning. We explored the hotel, played several games of cards and watched a movie. She fell asleep pretty quickly, but I had a very hard time going to sleep thinking about this trip.
This morning I had a yummy breakfast and caught a Lyft to my gate where a few TBC parents were already gathered. Quickly the terminal filled with boys and their lovingly nervous parents. We checked all their bags and the boys gathered to sing “God Bless America” and then say their goodbyes. There were tears and hugs and final lectures about finishing summer reading and then… there were no more parents.
The plane is much more spacious than I remember from my last trip and the entertainment options are extensive. There’s seat to seat chat and video games and movies. Several options to keep the kids busy as we fly 7000 miles to Beijing.