A Joy Ride

For three years a friend, Jackie, and I have been talking about her visiting us here, but it just wasn’t happening.  I wrote her asking if she would like us to come get her in our plane and spend a few days; her response was instant and positive.  I hoped her time with us would be as exciting as she anticipated it to be.

Friday afternoon, as she was checking out the parking situation at Midstate Aviation, Bowers Field, a fire broke out in the CWU Flight Program’s maintenance hangar!

Saturday morning we flew into the windy Kittitas Valley to pick her up; the flight back was a bit bumpy but beautiful.

Wine was not on the agenda as she doesn’t drink alcohol – she is even more a light-weight than me!  No problem, Walla Walla has lots to do and see.  Nature and History provided the primary points of interest.  Wheat fields, vineyards, and Bennington Lake Reservoir and all of the pastoral charm of the Walla Walla Valley put on glorious displays of color and texture.  She and I spent an hour touring the Marcus Whitman Hotel’s second floor gallery of paintings depicting the history of the Whitman Mission before enjoying a wonderful lunch at T. Maccarone’s.

Bennington Lake, Walla Walla
Storms in the Blue Mountains looked pretty threatening over Bennington Lake.
Lunch at T Maccarone's.
Jackie and I enjoyed a delicious lunch and lots of talking at T Maccarone’s.

I met Jackie when I lived in Ellensburg with my children.  As my teenage son’s life seemed to unravel due to his Bipolar Disorder and other diagnosed mental illnesses I reached out to the local NAMI Chapter; Jackie was the point of contact.  Having local, personal, understanding was my saving grace.  All the professional care we had was as challenging as understanding my son’s needs.  She and several others helped me navigate and stay afloat during that time.

Our Tuesday evening flight to Bowers Field was more beautiful than Saturday morning.  We flew over the Yakima Valley and north, west of the Yakima River Canyon, into the Kittitas Valley.  So much terrain and alternating irrigated farmland and desert  meant some bumps were inevitable.  We just might see Jackie in Walla Walla again as she enjoyed her visit.

We don’t anticipate ferrying friends and family by plane, but we enjoy having visitors.  Hubby has been studying and practicing to renew his Flight Instructor Certification.  That is scheduled, weather permitting, as the next journey this plane has in store.  Just another step toward our dream.  Cheers!