Flying From West Coast To Gulf Coast...ANOTHER Adventure!

Our last day in San Diego found us at the San Diego Safari Park.  We got a sort of late start due to the fact that Ryan's sunburn (you remember that sunburn from earlier in the week?...) had flared up a bit and he now had what I like to refer to as "the itch factor".  I have never personally experienced this before, but Robby has and I witnessed THAT.  Let's just isn't good.  Robby, Caitlin and Codi all set out for the drug store and got a couple of things the pharmacist recommended for him.  We eventually made it to the Safari Park where we got to see more exotic animals in very natural looking habitats.  The June Gloom lifted and the day ended up being sunny with cool temperatures.  We had a couple of unique souvenirs made in the park and then drove back to the house to use all of the remaining food for our final meal in San Diego.

By Saturday morning, we were all packed and ready to leave early, so we just decided to go to Downtown La Jolla and browse through some of the shops there.  I really wished that we had just ONE MORE DAY to spend there...the downtown area was so neat!  But, alas it was time for this "Big, Fat Family Vacation" to come to an end.  We turned in that big, old 12 passenger van and hopped on the Avis bus to head to our terminal.  If we could just make it through security and to our gate with all of these people, it would be a miracle. 

I KNEW there was going to be problems as we were standing in line to go through security.  I suppose since there was no "adventure" planned for the day, Robby and Ryan decided to make one themselves!  We were stripping off our sweaters and shoes and jewelry when I heard Robby say in a whisper, "I'm gonna have a pat down."  "WHAT?!...What do you mean?", I asked.  He said, "I'm not going through that body scanner; they're gonna have to pat me down."  OK...was this the same guy who told ME not to make waves in the New York airport when the body scanning came out?!  So, as I was shoving the rest of my stuff through, I heard him say, "I'll have a pat down."  Then, I heard the girl say, "We need someone for a male pat down."  I turned around and there he was...sitting in a chair waiting to get his pat down.  As they were instructing me to walk through the scanner, I heard Ryan saying, "I'll have a pat down too."  OH MY GOSH!  Robby was still sitting in his chair waiting and now Ryan was standing right behind him...waiting for his pat down too!  As I was attempting to gather things that were coming off the conveyor belt, I noticed that my mother-in law was being patted down and Parker's diaper bag was being searched too!  About that time, a TSA agent came over to me to tell me that they were going to have to scan my purse again.  "OK", I said.  They had to do that coming because I had forgotten that I put a bottle of Parker's apple juice in there.  This time I knew I didn't have any liquids in there; I wasn't worried...UNTIL that TSA agent came over and told me he had to search my purse.  I STILL wasn't worried; I even told him there was just a bunch of crap in there.  About that time, he pulled out that organic aloe vera that Ryan had put in my purse the day before for his sunburn...oops!  I forgot about THAT!  He told me I had "options" about what I could do with the aloe vera, so I said, "Let's hear them."  Well...after I heard them, I really wouldn't call them "options".  I could "abandon the product" (his exact words...), go back out of security and check a bag with the product in it or if someone had dropped me off at the airport, they could come get it from me.  I decided to "abandon the product".  That was easy enough, however, Robby and Ryan were STILL having their pat downs and Justin noted that Ryan most likely hadn't really thought that decision through, considering his sunburn.  I considered asking that agent since he was already patting Ryan down, if he could just go ahead and rub a little of that "abandoned aloe vera" on him before disposing of it.  FINALLY we were on our way to our gate.

Upon arriving at our gate, we found that our flight had been delayed...GREAT! (sigh...)  Instead of flying out at 2:30, we didn't leave until 4:00.  This was more of a problem than just an inconvenience since we would only have 30 minutes after we landed until our connecting flight left.  I turned a little negative at this point, realizing that we would probably miss that flight and have to stay in Dallas for the night.  Robby and Codi, however, thought that since we had 10 people flying and were taking up most of the plane, they would hold that connecting flight up for us...THEY DID!

All 10 of us settled in for our last flight which would last only about 50 minutes...hopefully we could all hold it together for that long.  The flight attendant DID try us, I will have to say, but we finally made it back to "Da Boot" and were home by 10 p.m.  NOW, we had the same problem we had upon arriving in California...our bodies thought it was 8! (ugh...)  Well, we hadn't eaten since noon and after a quick search of the pantry and refrigerator we discovered there wasn't much to choose from.  I had some Doritos, Peanut M&M's and a few Skittles, while Robby ate Pop Tarts and Ryan nibbled on some Eggo Waffles.  As much as I hated it, I knew that I would have to grocery shop tomorrow...our "Big, Fat Family Vacation" was officially over!

NOTE:  I WOULD like to note that the TSA agents were all very nice and respectful of everyone.  Those
             who CHOSE to have the pat downs did so for their own personal reasons.

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