I’ll admit, this morning when m: y alarm went off, telling me to get up for the air show, I went a little snooze button happy.  However, the kids and I managed to rally and we were off only twenty minutes after I had planned to leave.  That early in the morning there was almost no traffic on the way to go pick up Julie.  So we were off to the air show at a reasonable time.  And then started our adventure.

As we were already on post, I saw no reason to leave post just to get the parking from which we could hop on a bus to take us to the other side of post to go to the air show.  But I had no idea how to get where I wanted to go.  It didn’t help that I didn’t really know where I wanted to go.  The maps and directions I found online were about as clear as mud.  Now, I must confess some issues of mine before we go on so it will be made clear why this is a big deal.  Number 1:  I hate driving.  I just do.  On occasion, on a beautiful day, on a highway with no, and I mean no, other traffic, I have been known to have fun.  In general, though, it is a means to an end, that I would honestly rather someone else do.  Number 2:  It doesn’t take much for me to get lost.  I am easily confused. I get confused by directions often.  Really, I over think them and second guess them.  Now, I give awesome directions, when I give directions, but I do that because I try to give directions that I could follow and I need highly detailed directions.  I also have a hard time imagining missing pieces.  If I haven’t driven a particular stretch of road, in my world it doesn’t exist. I must have been the driver, as well, I don’t pay attention as a passenger.  This means that when the road I want to take is closed, I’m up a creek.  Combining my general lostness with my difficulty to follow directions, ie detour signs, makes for some interesting times.  I do have a good new navigations system, but it feels about detour signs about like I do.  Number 3: I hate driving other people.  Know if I’m offering to drive you anywhere, I have much love for you.  I am overcoming a whole heck of a lot of uncomfortableness to do that.  And the more I care about what you think of me, the more uncomfortable I am driving you around.  I know I’m a cautious (code word for slow and doesn’t take risks) driver, and I know that that annoys most of the people I know.  So I figure I will be annoy you greatly when I drive.  Number 4: I have no love for traffic.  Other drivers stress me out.  The tragic tale of my Kia should give some insight as to why other drivers stress me out.  The more other drivers I have to deal with, the more stressed I become.  Put all that together, poor Julie was in for an adventure she could not have been prepared to deal with.  So I headed toward the road that the main gate would have led to had they not re-directed traffic, figuring that at some point I would be able to join all the cars coming on to post.  We quickly ran into a security guard and asked where we needed to go.  We were given the name of the street with no directions.  However, knowing how the base roads were laid out, we were quickly able to ascertain where it ought to be.  We were right, we found the road, but we still weren’t at the parking lot yet.  As we drove toward where we saw buses in the distance we ran into road barriers.  The parking lot was just across the street, but I had no idea how I might be able to reach it.  Julie ran across the street and asked the soldiers directing traffic what we were supposed to do.  Driving past the barriers and one U-turn (honestly, more like a three-point turn than a U-turn) later we were in line to get to the parking lot.  Before entering the lot a soldier asked if we were DOD, civilians, or a vendor.  When we showed our ID card, he pointed down the road we were free to drive on.  He had no idea.  I was over driving.  I didn’t want to try to find my way across base.  I just wanted to park.  I looked at him and asked if we couldn’t just park and take the shuttle, please.  He was surprised, but waved us on.  After backing into a parking space (only accomplished by virtue of my back-up camera).  Then we got to pass through the metal detector and having our bags searched.  The private searching my bag had to check out my hand sanitizer to make sure I wasn’t carrying contraband.  Finally, we were on the bus and on our way to the air show.

As we neared the show, I was glad I hadn’t tried to get closer.  The traffic was insane.  In fact, since being at the air show, I have seen figures of the number of people at the air show.  Between 100,000 to 150,000 people there, and most tried parking on the Air Force side of post.  Some people were in their car for an hour and a half waiting to get to the lots.  The Army side did not experience quite that craziness.

The air show was great fun.  The kids had fun, got to climb on planes and tanks, and got tons of free stuff.  My husband would probably be disappointed in us.  We never really just sat and watched the planes.  We did watch them overhead as we went from hangar to hangar, display to display, and vendor to vendor.  We saw the Golden Knights, the paratroopers, the older planes, and the F-22’s.  And they were all cool.  At the same time though, we entered all the drawings, got cool posters, tons of pens, stickers, and candy.  The kids got to do the bouncy things.  We had a lot of fun.

However, it wasn’t long before it all combined to wear me out.  I was ready to go.  The kids were ready as well.  Their tiredness shown by lethargy or over-hyperness.  We boarded the bus to go back.  So we didn’t get to see and do everything, but I think ending on a good note and having fun is more important that checking every box of things to do.

Leaving the show was easy, especially since I decided to kid-nap Julie and make her go out to a late lunch/early dinner with me, so we just left post instead of trying to get from the parking area back to the residential part of post.  So I got my Mexican I had been craving last night.