A First for Mom

John Deere plant in Horizontina, Brazil.

This afternoon, my mom will be boarding a plane heading to Brazil for a business trip.  As a 35+ year employee of John Deere, they felt that Mom should go on this trip before she retires early next year, not just for the work, but also for the experience.  Deere has a plant in Horizontina, which is in the southwestern part of Brazil.  She traveled a lot when my sister and I were smaller, but that started to decrease as we went through high school and college.

This will be the first time that she will travel outside of the U.S. for Deere.  She’s excited, I’m excited, but it’s a “guarded” sense of excitement.  Back in April, everybody’s friend and news reporter Paul Yeager chronicled his wife Amy’s trip to the Netherlands for John Deere.  Her business trip was “extended” after a volcano erupted in Iceland, nearly shutting down all of the major airports in Europe.

It’s likely that no volcanoes will erupt down in Brazil, but you pray and hope that everyone has a safe trip down there and back.

Of course the one person who isn’t happy about seeing “Nana” go is my 6-year old niece Kadren.  Nana and her are buddies and Kadren hates it when Mommy, Daddy, or Nana goes out of town for more than 2 days.  But she’s smart enough to understand that Mom is going to South America for work and she’ll return one week from today.  So, the only way we’ll stay in contact with Mom is by email.  The IT guys were kind enough to make sure that Mom can dial up her laptop and check email messages.  Phone calls will be too expensive.

Miss Kadren at her daycare graduation in '09.

I would be at the Quad Cities Airport today, but I already spent several days earlier this week seeing Mom before she leaves this afternoon. So, I already got my fill of getting my behind whipped in Wii by Kadren, going over some stuff with Mom (you know, “just in case”), and doing family time.

Mom will fly out of the Quad Cities to Chicago O’Hare for a 4-hour layover, then a 10-hour flight to Sao Paulo, then another flight to Passo Fundo, and then a road trip to Horizontina. All of this by Sunday night.

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