This is a follow up post to one I published 8/31/18, The next Year of Long Weekends and Mini Vacations.
Mark never Travels alone! We have been married 28 years and I think this is the first time he has flew alone. I am usually the Travel Organizer and lead us through the process, so we were a little worried about how things would go.
Here is a look at Mark’s solo trip to Texas.
First of all he was travelling to College Station, Texas. There is a small airport in College Station, but to fly into Easterwood is usually really expensive. Since our son moved there in 2016, we have driven from Michigan to Texas once and last year we flew into Love Field in Dallas and then rented a car. For this trip, he had a Delta Voucher and the best plan was for him to fly into Houston and catch the Shuttle that runs from there to College Station. It is only $35 each way, so not a bad price.
Because we had just taken a trip in June, the off site parking location was still fresh in his mind. He had no problems getting parked and shuttled into the airport! Security and check in were smooth as was his flight into Houston. Once there he only had about a 30 minute window to catch the shuttle. It would not run again for almost 3 hours if he missed it. Thankfully, for this quick trip he was only travelling with a carry on. No baggage to collect. I had sent him photos of the shuttle area and written directions how to get there. Houston was a bigger airport than he expected, but he managed to make the shuttle!! Later that evening I got a text that he had made it to College Station and that he and Mason were heading to dinner.
The reason he had gone to visit this particular weekend was that Texas A&M were playing Clemson in football. Mason works for their Sports Production department. He had purchased season tickets and Mark was going to get to attend a great football game.
As if a solo visit with our son and going to a big game weren’t enough, College Game Day came to College Station to cover it. Mark’s favorite show! He was so excited when he found out. He got up extra early so Mason could do his set up work and Mark hung out at the Game Day site. It was a rainy day so they took a break to make some lunch and hang out before heading back for the game.
Texas A&M is a University with a huge Alumni following that observes a lot of long standing traditions. Game days are jam packed with a huge Fan Zone of pregame activities including a Spirit Walk. The Players arrive by bus and pass through the awaiting fans, parade style, on their way to the stadium while the Yell Leaders rev up the crowd. Of course, there is lots of tailgating. The families of the Production Team have a great tailgate set up and are very hospitable in letting us join in when we visit.
Finally it was time to watch the game. Mason has pretty good seats! He headed off to film from the sideline while Dad watched the game. It was a great contest with a close score, 28-26. Sadly Clemson won, but Mark still had a great time.
They had time for a big breakfast before Mark had to catch the shuttle out to Houston. Everything went very smoothly on the return trip and he even got into Detroit a little early. He made it home safely by 10:30 pm for a good nights rest before heading to work Monday morning.
Vacation Hours Used – 0
Since this was a quick weekend trip it didn’t require any vacation hours (remember he is all out til April). There were a lot of other important things about this trip. Firstly it was a successful solo adventure for Mark which will help him feel confident in doing more solo trips in the future. It was a great opportunity for him to visit our son one on one and enjoy some super fun activities. The trip also was a bit of redemption for Delta, after our horrible experience with them this summer. It also gave me a little time on my own to make a quick trip to visit a friend in Ohio.
As much as I love our travels together, sometimes it’s fun to do our own thing!