So Erin got back Saturday afternoon around 3:30 and Evan rolled up at around 10:45 pm.  In both cases, we parents were waiting as the busses rolled up to the curb and we all anxiously scanned the windows looking for our little darlings.  Were we somehow worried that they might not be there?  As if concerned that they would have been left at the last rest stop; perhaps having taken too long in the restroom and the bus then left?  Or are we just glad to have them back?  Who knows; I just know that I and Mel were scanning the windows like crazy people and then waving at the children who we paying us no mind whatever – simply grabbing their stuff and trudging up the aisle to the door.

Both kids apparently had a good time and each went through a bit of withdrawal when they moved from a busload of constant stimulation by their friends to a relatively quiet minivan with their parents.  Both were pretty subdued (or perhaps just exhausted) and didn't really start to talk about the trips until the next day.  Both told stories of making sandwiches for homeless people, buying souvenirs on the way home, how annoying some kids are, and other things.  Evan told a story of riding a bus in Mexico which sounded like a demolition derby.  Apparently the bus driver took out some guy's mirror from his car and very nearly annihilated a street vendor's cart.  This little vignette came complete with the street vendor shaking his fist at them as they rounded the corner.  Then there was the story of the tire exploding on the bus.  Good times, good times.

We got a card from Erin on Thursday that told the story for her:

"Trip summary: 

  1. Monday:  Made 1022 sandwiches. 
  2. Tuesday: I almost died in the kitchen. 
  3. Worked at a thrift store, bought a vase, a hat, and something 4 aunt linda."

The "dying in the kitchen" thing was apparently due to the heat. 

So, all in all, they enjoyed themselves.  Evan's group took a sojourn to the beach at Padre Island but since it was about 65 degrees at the time, there wasn't much swimming.  Many got in the water but few actaully stayed in the water.  For Erin's part, they went to the Houston Galleria to ice skate and spend money. 

So now it's back to school for them.