A week ago, 3/28/12, Carson had news he would be going to the MTC in Provo as his Visa had not arrived. On Thursday after receiving this notice, Carsons Visa did show up. On Friday we received the airline tickets, passport etc. The Stake President scheduled to set Carson apart at 8:30PM Tuesday 4/3/12. President Morris did a wonderful job setting Carson apart as a missionary!
We showed up at the airport Wednesday, Terminal 2, Delta Airlines ticket counter at 8:45AM. Lots of emotion as we packed everyone in the Suburban, 9 of us; almost enough seat belts for everyone! Carson was to fly out at 11AM so we had plenty of time. A Delta employee came over to give us a hand. He politely asked for Carsons Passport which he then scanned in the kiosk to get a boarding pass. The machine did not recognize Carsons ID, which happens frequently, so the gentlemen walked us over to the ticket counter. We handed Carsons passport to the agent who began searching for Carsons boarding pass. She paused, then kept tapping away at her computer. She appeared to be puzzled. I thought, "oh, oh, there is a problem". After a minute or so the agent looked up and said, matter of fact, "He was supposed to leave yesterday!" We looked at each other, with that "surprised look". "What? Uh, no one bothered to read the paperwork?", I inquired. Dad, it won't help to get mad. OK. This clearly had happened before. The agent asked us to wait a minute while she made a call. Within seconds, literally, she typed away at her computer then looked up and said, I have him booked on the 1:55PM flight today. He will have only a two hour layover instead of the five and half hour layover he had anticipated. Whew, disaster averted.
We had the privilege of taking Carson out for a smoothie with the 8 of us in tow! We went back home to pick up a missed item and found ourselves back at the airport, hugging, crying and wishing Carson a safe trip to Brazil! What a day. At 8PM Carson called us from Atlanta. He told us two missionaries from the Provo MTC were on the flight, they too had missed their flight the day before. We were happy to hear he would have some company going down to Sao Paulo; [I think he was too!] Come to find out the documentation that we had received was vague at best, the only indication Carson was to leave on Tuesday was the reference that he would arrive in the MTC in Sao Paulo on 4/4. I had a nice conversation with the missionary dept.
On his flight to Atlanta, Carson also flew with three Sister Missionaries heading to Argentina from the MTC in Provo. In the Atlanta airport, Elder Zwick , of the Seventy, happened to be walking past the missionaries so he stopped and talked with them, offering some positive encouragement. And so his missionary adventure begins...