Part of why I traveled all summer was to keep busy. Tom’s in Montana volunteering for AmeriCorps, and I’m obviously bummed spending the summer without him. Taking trips to D.C., Richmond, Myrtle Beach and Wildwood helped make the first half of summer fly by.
That first half was crucial. Why? Because at the end of July, I got to visit Tom.
Let me just say, three months apart is a long effing time.
I booked the trip ages ago, in the hopes of securing cheap flights. Actually, I figured, “Who’d be going to Montana? This willl be a breeze.” I was wrong. Wrong, wrong wrong. In fact, visiting Glacier National Park in the middle of July meant packed planes and crowded airports. But it was worth it.
It was the most beautiful place I’ve ever been to.
The pictures really don’t do it justice. The only problem with Montana is getting there. For my trip, I left after work on Thursday the 22nd, hopped on a Delta plane in Philly, had a layover in St. Paul, and made it to Kalispell around midnight, their time. Which was 2 a.m. my time. Not exactly the epitome of luxury, but when we landed and I saw Tom, I did not care.
It wasn’t quite the reunion you see in movies (considering I was lugging a giant Vera Bradley bag, hadn’t had water in 8 hours and hopped into Tom’s moving car as he slowly drove past the arrivals), but he did bring flowers, which makes that the 4th time that’s ever happened. I can’t really describe it —it was just insanely good to see him.
Honestly, the trip was everything I hoped and imagined about Montana. Though wildfires closed down part of Glacier while I was there, we managed to do a little bit of hiking and taking in the sights. We played tourist for the few days I was there. Tom showed me around, I took pictures of pretty much everything I saw (driving down a highway? Take a picture. Overlooking a Wal-Mart with mountains in the background? Take a picture.)
In addition to the outdoorsy things, we also went whiskey tasting at a local distillery, and got to meet up with old friends from high school who now live in the area. Which, when you think about it, is kind of insane. Kalispell is about the size of Ephrata, so to have Tom end up so close to another person from our tiny high school is kind of mind blowing.
But one of the best parts of the trip? PADDLE BOARDING. I had told Tom that I really wanted to try it out, so the day before I left we grabbed our stuff and headed to Flathead Lake without knowing what we were really in for. We made fools of ourselves for the first 45 minutes of our hour-long session, but I have to say, I loved it. Plus, I was much better than Tom (he’d argue otherwise). Even falling into the cold, glacier water was great. Not great, though, was how freaking sore I was the next day flying home.
After 3 days, I left — though I almost managed to sneak a few more days in after I missed my 5:45 a.m. flight. Thank God for nice midwest airline ladies. I can’t wait to go back (but I’m not moving there — everyone can stop asking). I think in October I’m going to fly back and drive home with Tom (!!!).
That can’t come soon enough.