Monday, 23JAN, in the early evening Corrie took Dan to the New Orleans airport to fly to Seattle, WA. For the last couple of winters Dan & son Joe have tried to find time to stay at house in Sultan for skiing (see below BLOG link). This year things were a little more complicated. For the first time daughter Rebecca, w/Jaxson & Mason, decided to join the trip. Corrie then decided she would not stay alone in Houma, LA. Finally at the last minute Joe asked if one of his buds (Ben who could not ski) could join-in? So what was to be two adults & one rental car; turned into five adults, two kids & two rental cars! Oh, & two different arrival dates & four different departure dates!!! Because of all this Dan decided to arrive first & depart last. Arriving in Seattle, Dan got the first rental car & headed to house outside Sultan, WA.
Tuesday Dan spent most of the day preparing for everyone’s arrival on 26JAN. First up was picking up four packages of clothes & snow gear shipped to the neighbors. After completing other preparations, Dan started drive to Stevens Pass ski area for some night skiing. But then he decided he better stop in Sultan & check his cell phone to see if they were open for night skiing – not on Mondays or Tuesday. Good thing he checked? Wednesday morning Dan made it to Stevens Pass for a good day of skiing.
Thursday was more prep’ing for everyone’s arrival at SeaTac airport, including picking up second rental car. Finally getting everyone back to house around midnight.
Friday, 27JAN, Oma, Opa, Rebecca, Jaxson & Mason headed to a state sno-park at Snoqualmie Pass for tubing, & making snow men (aka Olafs). Followed by lunch at Twedes Café in North Bend, WA (some of you may know this café from the TV show Twin Peaks – Damn fine cup o’ coffee!).
Meanwhile Joe & Ben got rental boarding equipment & shopped for snow clothes. Dan & Rebecca then headed to Stevens Pass for night skiing; where they eventually met Joe & Ben before heading back to house.
Early Saturday morning, 28JAN, we head to Stevens Pass for one hour ski lesson for Jaxson & Mason. Jaxson loves it & stays on bunny slope for hours; Mason definitely not enthused. After lunch Oma takes grandkids home; Dan & Rebecca ski far into the night. Again meeting-up w/Joe & Ben, before heading home.
Sunday was breakfast for everyone at Sultan Bakery. Then Joe & Ben head to hiking at Wallace Falls, & visiting Leavenworth, WA. Opa Dan baby sits grandkids while Oma Corrie & Rebecca go shopping/sightseeing. That evening was smores around the fire ring.
Monday morning, 30JAN, Dan loses a crown during breakfast. After making emergency dental appointment, Dan takes Corrie, Rebecca & grandkids to airport. Joe & Ben head back to Stevens Pass for more boarding. That afternoon Dan has his crown repaired & returns one of the rental cars.
Tuesday an early start by Dan, Joe & Ben to Stevens Pass ski area; they get excellent parking & are one of the first on hill to enjoy six inches of fresh powder. Excellent day of skiingJ!!! Dinner was at Bubba’s where Joe makes the mistake of ordering the WTF burger (four pounds of meat he barely dented).
Wednesday, 01FEB, Dan drives Joe & Ben to Stevens Pass where they plan on boarding all day into the night. Dan heads back to house to do some errands/maintenance. Mid-afternoon Joe calls & asks to be picked up as soon as possible – they are done. Dinner at Bubba’s again, but no WTF burgers.
Thursday morning’s plan was to only take Ben to airport, but Joe decides to head back to Louisiana early. So Dan takes both to SeaTac airport. Now things really get hectic. We won’t bore with all the details but we have been looking for a new Toad for almost a year. Specifically, a Chevy Colorado pick-up w/crew cab, 4-wheel, & diesel. The diesel models sell quickly & are hard to find. After two failed attempts (one in Seattle & one in New Orleans), cousin Bob recommended Dave Smith (largest Dodge dealer in USA, & largest Chevy/GMC dealer in PNW) in Idaho.
Literally as Dan is pulling out of SeaTac parking garage he gets a call from salesman at Dave Smith. Not only do they have eight 2017 diesels, they have one that matches what we want down to the color! The salesman then quotes a price that is over $1K less than we have been offered elsewhere (even by Costco’s or USAA’s buying service)! So Dan spends the rest of day/night on purchasing a new Toad in Kellogg, ID, making arrangements to get there, & rescheduling his non-refundable flight to New Orleans.
Friday morning, 03FEB, Dan missed the bus from Monroe, WA, to Spokane, WA. Now he really scrambles to make arrangements to fly out of SeaTac to Spokane. He arrives in Spokane to discover a level 2 snow storm stretching from Spokane eastward past Idaho. Thankfully the dealership provided transportation for the long, snowy drive to Kellogg.
Saturday morning Dan discovers a foot of new snow on ground. Three hours later Dan is on road to Sultan, WA, with a 2017 Chevy Colorado truckJ! The drive starts w/constant snow from Kellogg, ID, to west of Spokane, WA, on I-10. From Spokane on I-10 it is clear & dry. Approaching the east side of Snoqualmie Pass it starts snowing & chains are required (except for 4-wheel drive vehiclesJ). Once over the pass it is heavy rain to the house - 30mpgJ. What a 24hr period!
Sunday Dan closes-up the house; & neighbor, Sara Johnson, takes him to an airport hotel to spend the night. Dan decided that spending night next to airport would be easier than asking someone to drive to/& from SeaTac during rush hour on Monday morning. After arriving at hotel it starts snowing – bad sign for tomorrow? Monday morning, 06FEB, Dan wakes up to six inches of snow in Seattle & chaos at airport. His plane is at the gate, but the inbound flight crew is delayed by 2-1/2 hours. Turns out he is one of the lucky ones, compared to those that are delayed until the next day or longer. Four hours late, at 10PM, he finally made it to New Orleans & Corrie.