I always pack in stages when I’m going on a trip. First there’s the stuff I know I won’t be using regularly on the days before the trip. Then comes the stuff I know I will use on a semi-regular basis before I go to the trip. These things will always be accessible should I need them. Lastly, and this happens either the night before or several hours before embarking on the trip, I put the stuff in that is used regularly and often.
I took a trip to Charlotte, NC a few weeks ago to see the kids. They moved there in July 2014. I’ve been there twice before and both times have been uneventful. That is to say, they didn’t include trips to amusement parks or to any other venue the city of Charlotte might have to offer. We dined, we walked, we shopped. I enjoyed our time together and I believe they did as well.
When I was about to leave only one of the three said goodbye and gave me a hug. The other two, because it was so early, were still in bed and fast asleep. I didn’t feel right leaving in the darkness of the morning without saying goodbye so I went into their rooms, nudged them awake with a soft voice and said goodbye. They both managed a groggy goodbye back.
I don’t know why this bothered me so. I imagined a more pronounced farewell. I imagined wrong.