Friday, July 12, 2013

First Days in Oregon

Getting to the airport was no piece of cake.  We hired an unmarked cab (a brand new Toyota Sienna) to take us to the airport. We were floored when it fit our eight luggage sized boxes, piano, a huge bag, five carry-ons and four back packs with no struggle whatsoever. Our friend, Anna Guerrero gave the kids and I a ride to the airport while Daddy rode in the unmarked taxi.

Checking in was really challenging and at first the check-in lady didn't want to let us check all the luggage, but Daddy talked to her and she agreed to check all the boxes and things.  We must have looked crazy with two carts that we pushed back and forth, loading up our boxes.  We didn't care. We were moving.  We met some other New Yorkers moving to Portland as well, but they looked a hundred times more relaxed than we did.  You played with three kids for awhile (not you K, you slept and ate with me) and funnily enough they all sat right next to us on the plane. What a ride.

I let you get three snacks each and the attendant said I should write a happy letter to the airline because he was so helpful. When we were landing the toddler sitting next to K and I began crying because of the pressure on his ears, and another attendant came and gave her a two paper coffee cups with warm/almost hot towelettes inside. She told the toddler's mother that if she put the cups with the towelettes inside over her baby's ears for a few seconds, careful to not let the hot towelettes get too near his ears or the droplets from the condensation,  it would relieve the pressure.  It must have worked because she did it for all of three seconds and the baby seemed to feel better.

Now came the shock. . . complete difference from JFK and New York came PDX and Portland.  When we got here, we found out that our hotel, the Comfort Inn and Suites, stopped picking up people from the airport at midnight. We arrived at 12:30 and the reason I had gotten that hotel was for the shuttle.  W called and explained the situation to them and the manager (I think) drove the shuttle van over and picked us up. She was so nice and cheerful, you wouldn't have known we'd just complained.
Then one of the people that helps people with their luggage, Franchesca, literally ran to help us load up the shuttle. The place was practically empty and she could have been sitting watching but she ran to help us while I held a fussy K and loaded you into the shuttle.  I tried to tip her, but she wouldn't accept any money.  I was floored.  Where were we?!  People helping when they weren't required by law? Inconceivable! I felt like hugging these people!

You were so excited to get to the hotel. It took you awhile to fall asleep even though EST it was 4 a.m.  You love hotels!  The breakfast was delicious and hot and the beds were very comfortable.  The front desk people were so kind and answered our questions kindly and they gave us a map.
We didn't make it to church, we were so tired, but we did make it out to eat and then come back to the hotel to rest.
On Monday we got on the bus to go sign our lease and get the key to our rental house.  It took us three hours to get there, when we were planning on it taking an hour and a half.  But, the bus drivers all waved at us while we were waiting for the right buses and were very helpful.  I didn't worry that we were going to be tossed around as we drove (being tossed is par for the ride in NYC) and T and S, you fell asleep for a few minutes.
After we signed the lease, the car people came to pick us up to purchase our cars.  We are now a two car family!! 
 We were there for several hours and T, you were so excited to try to win their i-pad that they had as a monthly drawing, you kept running around asking over and over, "Am I going to win the i-pad? I really want the i-pad!" We kept telling you that many people put their names in for the i-pad and that you probably shouldn't get your hopes up, but you were adamant that you were going to win it.
We drove our cars to the hotel (we had to pay for another night because we got there so late, but they held it for us for as long as they could without charging), packed up and came to our new home.  You danced and laughed all over the house when you saw it for the first time.  I wish I had filmed it but I felt just as happy as you. I loved just watching you and feeling so grateful that we could live in such a nice home.  You love every inch of this house/property, especially the back yard.

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