Monday, January 10, 2011

Building Dreams,Friendships & Memories Part 3

Wheeeeewwww!  I, my fellow chaperones and a majority of the kids have now made it through this trip all the way till December 31, on the amount of sleep most bank in 2.5 nights.  How do they figure they can wake us up?  Toss us all into an amusment park for more FUN!

The weather was California cold
We layered up
 (except for our manfriend who sported shorts no matter the weather). 
We rode everything time would allow. 
Which wasn't enough time. 
Of course we did some eating between rides.
  All that eating can give the girls gas.
Nothing was passed in public, just a lot of talk. 
 Our manfriend/ride buddy was slowly becoming one of the girls. 
The only thing he couldn't grasp was our constant need to visit the restroom.  

I made the ride buddies stop for photos with characters

 While we waited in line for the back lot tour
We got some devastating news--an F3 tornado had hit our community.
The text starting rolling in with pictures attached showing the devastating damage.
The night before my father-in-law who lives in Branson was hit. 
 His boat dock was demolished by the twister. 
 Two boats in the slips sunk to the bottom of Table Rock Lake. 
 His house, well the roof got kissed by the fierce winds as well. 
I text my friends who lived in the areas that were affected...
the same area many on the trip live.  
Many of our chaperones and families on the trip depended on their neighbor's
 kind heart to board up their homes--windows blown, roof totally gone. 
King Ralph was enjoying his day off when he was summoned to work.
Princess A and D starting sending me pictures of the city that he protects and serves
downed power lines up and down the main road. 
Sad and scary! 
This is how one of the neighborhoods down the street from the school I work at looks
(ten of the families in the school have been displaced)
there we were on the back lot tour and the
War of Worlds set didn't look much different than our Sunset Hills neighborhood
When you are hundreds of miles away there is nothing you can do but continue on with what you are doing.  The kids knew to call home and if they needed to talk with us we were there to listen.

We just kept on having our Grinchmas fun.
 My favorite ride was 

We took one of the other male chaperones on the Mummy. 
We ride buddies rode it twice in a row. 
So the extra had to ride twice.
It made him green...he ditched us after that.  

We found the kids in line behind us on Jurassic Park

I snapped a final photo of M and her senior class/band mates
Then it was time to cut the fun short.

It was after all New Years Eve
when in California to march in the Rose Parade
you have to celebrate the New Year on New York time
M and her roomies bought these fun glasses
at the Universal gift shop
to ring in the New Year
(which they are  planning to wear to graduation--so they say)
Wait, here's a a closer look at the light-up spectacles
Then when the bellies of 208 teenagers
 had been packed with ice cream sundaes
(since there was no bubbly to toast for the adults we too got drunk on the sugared treat) 
 The California clock struck 9pm...
which meant in New York it was midnight...
which meant in the ballroom of the Warner Center Marriott
it too was midnight
and the kids, all 208 of them blew their party horns
and hugged and high fived
You know I am still curious the kid who got a
full comic book character face paint job
at the amusement park got the stuff off.  

Then we sent those sugar charged teens to bed with their alarms set for 330am.

To be continued... 


Lin said...

Oh, how horrible that there was so much damage to your community! I hope everyone is okay. I'm sure it was horrible to be so far away and not be there to help or to see if you had damage.

The trip looks wonderful. I can see why you made and sold a cabillion bandwiches--it must have cost a fortune!!!

ThE MidLiFe CrUiSeR said...

Holy crap! Those tornadoes can do A LOT of damage! Living in TX most of my life, we've lived through some scary stuff. Luckily, never had our house trashed, but our neighborhood/community has been hit before. Hope everyone you know got through it ok. SO SAD!!

Ok, seriously. I'm going cross-eyed typing on this phone.

JODI said...

Lin, Nellie- Our side of town was spared, so the Avery abode stands firm. But, lots of our friends have houses that have quite a bit of damage. There was no deaths from the tornado so damage or not blessings are counted. It, however, is so heart wrenching to drive past that area of town and see homes gone or spray painted with a red "x". It's crazy how a twister hits--one house stands and the rest of the street gone.

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