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The Journey Home – integration back into life. Day 1

3/2/2020
This next bit, Rachel and I kept under wrap as we did not want anyone to know at the time being – we were unsure what would happen with the local declarations once we left. We were fully cleared by the CDC.

23:44 
After a lot of discussion, Rachel and I decided that we should try to make it home tonight. We didn’t know what things would look like in the morning, and had an opportunity to get a ride to the airport from a friend to get a rental car.

Our plan was to go downstairs, exit the quarantine zone, take a shuttle over to the gate of the military base, be dropped off just outside, be picked up by a friend who we won’t disclose, go to the car rental, and make it out of the county. Our plan is to make it past Austin, so just under two hours of driving.

We left the room with all of our luggage, taking one last look around what was our home for two weeks.

23:52 
Our shuttle is here! We spoke with the marshals at the gate. They asked if we were positive we wanted to leave, as they could no longer protect us once we left. We turned in our phones and room keys, had our clearance letters copied, and went on to the shuttle pickup. Some nice gentlemen helped us load our massive amount of luggage. We got on the shuttle with military escort, and the driver joked that “you must be this tall to ride this ride” before we all got on. There were four of us, total. I believe that there was only around 10 or so people who chose to leave.

Here is our shuttle and escort.

23:59 
We’ve just made it outside the base. We were dropped off in the parking lot.

3/3/2020
00:05 We are in our ride and en route to the airport.

00:40 
Made it to the rental place. We are safe from the media, as there are none here. We thought that this might be a huge perk of leaving at night.

1:03 
We have our rental car and are ready for business! They allowed us to just go to the parking lot and get whatever car we wanted. Now.. do I remember how to drive this thing?

A Chevy Malibu

1:30 
So we found out why Rachel had so many issues with her phone – her cellular data was still off from japan! We had a huge laugh over it.

1:46 
We made it out of county lines, and should be in the clear! We were thinking that we wanted to keep driving, so we wanted a snack. WHATABURGER!

A patty melt!

4:36 
We are about an hour and a half from home – we debated stopping at my parents to sleep, as they weren’t quite as far. We decided that it were best that we just make it home, so we stopped at Czech Stop (those of you who have every drove I35 will know this one) to grab a kolache and wake up.

06:07 
WE MADE IT TO OUR APARTMENT! It’s so strange to be home. Driving was definitely a hurdle – it took me about a good hour to remember how to fully control the car. We also just noticed that if we google “honeymoon” we are the top search result – oops!

07:00 
After showering, putting on our real wedding rings, and setting our belongings down, we headed to sleep. It’s been 25 hours. Tomorrow: we pick up Remy, see my mom for her birthday, drop off the rental car, and see Rachel’s parents! Let’s see how this whole “integrate back into life” thing goes.

11:27 
Just woke up! We noticed that the mayor of San Antonio I mentioned that he’s happy with the changes made to the CDCs plan.

This view is much better than that of quarantine in the morning!

FROM THIS POINT ON I will update 1-2 times daily. I want to focus on family and friends, and will let you all know how integration back into life is going.

22:58
Update on our day! We tried to drop off the rental car, but were unable to drop it off at the first location due to lack of parking. We went ahead to my parents house to catch up after having some chicken, saw the cats, and spent a few hours with them for moms birthday. After dropping off the rental car, we headed for Rachel’s parents and were reunited with our puppers + some awesome ribs cooked by the father in law! We ended our day with a drive back home that resulted in a flat tire, a ride home from Rachel’s mom, and leaving my car keys inside Rachel’s car, her heading to go get the keys, only to find out that it was in her purse the whole time. Remy is just chilling on the sofa without a care in the world.

Today was a little easier than we thought it might be, but not without some reservations. When we went inside any building, we felt as if everyone treated us as an old friend, and got a few looks. We were a little nervous that someone would recognize us, as the stigma has been very real with covid-19.

We also realized that reality will be a little hard to adjust to! We can’t just throw away dishes anymore – we actually have dishes that can be washed. We can go wherever we want now, but not without a flat tire coming for the final plot twist! It also took us about ten tries to get out of the door this morning, as we were just excited to get out and forgot about everything we could[n’t] think of.

To sum, we’re pretty much failing to get back into life today – let’s try again tomorrow!
That being said, all of these things (i.e. busted tire) may have ruined our days before. Today? We feel safe, and just laughed about everything. Our marriage has grown, our personalities are in full swing, and we are just so happy to be home reunited with those we love.

Our happy family!

Tomorrow, I will start posting a 1-2 times daily update, one post a day under the quarantine. I will also finally release a few articles on our honeymoon. Thank you all for joining me on this crazy adventure, and don’t forget to scroll down and subscribe if you like reading!

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