Local travel only for us over the holidays!

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As the years have gone by and my family here in Alaska grows and grows, traveling to visit family outside (lower 48) for the holidays, has become less frequent to it just doesn’t happen anymore. The time it takes to travel, the headaches for checking luggage, going through security and dealing with the crowds is just way too much for this old guy. According to, it’s 4,344 miles driving from Anchorage to where my mom lives in Maryland. When I flew there this past summer, it took almost 12 hours and it cost about $700. Now to fly for the holidays to visit her, it would cost over $1400 plus the new extra fees. That’s kind of pricey for me, especially with still having to deal with Santa Clause in Alaska.

Another drawback is I will only fly on an American made aircraft. If Boeing didn’t design and build it, I’m not flying on it. I’ll spend the extra money or take the extra time to make that happen. I spent a 20 year career working on American made aircraft and I know firsthand there are none better.

So, with 3 kids who each have spouses and 4 grandkids between them, my Christmas will be at home in Anchorage. I’ll spend the day cooking a ham and all the fixings. They’ll arrive after 3 to open presents and then have dinner. By then they will have visited with other family members that won’t be coming over here.
Even though Anchorage has an excellent public transportation system, it’ll have limited service for the holiday. Parking in the neighborhood will be a little tight, but we’ll make it work. Our snowfall for the year so far is on the mark, so no problem with having a white Christmas.

They’ll be no travelers coming in to visit for the holidays. It’s hard to expect someone to go through the same travel pains that you no longer will do yourself. Besides, they’ll have their own immediate family to share Christmas with.
Sometime during that chaos and mounds of wrapping paper, I’ll call mom and pass the phone around. She’ll have had her Christmas with my brothers and sisters and it’ll be getting close to her bed time. There’s a 4 hour time difference between her home and mine.

We have a lot to be thankful for. The new addition this year will be my son-in-law. He and my daughter just got married this past weekend. Last Christmas he couldn’t join us for the holidays because he was deployed to Afghanistan. This year he gets to enjoy our mayhem.

Christmas will be at home surrounded by my children and the family they have made. We’ll be eating good food and sharing all the presents that Santa left for us. I hope everyone’s Christmas is safe and as enjoyable as ours will be.


robin andrea said…
Sounds like you're going to have a wonderful holiday, Dave. Do your siblings ever Skype? Be a nice way to "see" your mom for Christmas too! said…
I just want to know where the sisters come in. I am the ONLY one! We sure miss you during the holidays, but I guess we scared you off this summer when we ALL got together. Don't forget to spoint the grandkids! It makes it fun when they have to go home.
Dave said…
Robin - I'm just getting into Skype. That won't work with mom. She's not a techie.

Diane - I like the warm trips back east. :) You can count on spoiling the grandkids.