[Note: This post was written last night, but I was too exhausted by the time I got home to get it uploaded - sorry!]
I'm writing this on my Blackberry while sitting on an Amtrak train, somewhere between Portland and Tacoma. Part of making the long-distance living arrangement work this year involves keeping our travel budget minimized, and with train tickets coming in at slightly less than a tank of gas, it makes sense for at least one weekend commute per month to be done via train. Not putting 300 miles (round trip) on one of the vehicles is icing on the cake, in that regard. It does require advance planning and minimized flexibility in schedule changes, but nothing terribly vexing.
True stories I'm learning on my first train commute: You get about four times the personal space on a train as you do on an airplane. There are power outlets provided if you want to work on a laptop or watch a movie. Most of the seats are on the top layer of the train so you get a nice scenic view (right now, it's pitch black outside, but I have gotten some interesting glimpses into people's house windows when we roll through the little towns!). Do I sound like a commercial yet? I also like the slightly burny smell that happens when they throw the brakes at the stations. Hmm...that last statement looks weirder written down than it sounded in my head...oh well!
Monkey has the day of school tomorrow ("bad weather" day built into the school year) so we will be spending the morning together. At 12:00, we will head over to Daddy's school and pick him up so the three of us can visit an audiologist, the first ear-related doctor we've seen since moving this summer. This visit marks a new season in Monkey's life, really in our family. We are beginning the process of seriously gathering information about the possibility of Monkey undergoing a series of surgeries for his "little ear" - more on that later, I promise. For now, let me just say that this train ride I am taking tonight, hurtling through the dark on a path unknown, with someone else behind the throttle, is symbolic of the journey we are beginning with our Monkey. I can only pray that God continues to show us where to take the precious child he has entrusted to us.