Alex gets specialized transport to and from school. The company has not been great about keeping us updated as to changes so we weren't particularly surprised when we didn't hear from them confirming that Alex was to be picked up. We had confirmed it through the school, so we were fairly comfortable.
Since we didn't have an exact time, Alex and I went outside to wait at 9 am. (Last year the van came between 9:10 and 9:15 most days.)
9:15 came and went. No van.
Okay, not a surprise. After all, it's the first day. Probably a new driver who doesn't know the routes, parents all wanting to have a quick chat.
9:30 came and went. No van.
Now I'm moving from polite understanding into irritation. The company has our contact information. The least they could do is call to let us know they were running this late.
9:31: Dave thinks he spots the van going the opposite way up the street. Ahh, we tell ourselves, they've gone to pick up someone else nearby and then they'll swing round and get Alex.
9:40, still no van.
I decide to call the school and lo and behold, we discover that of the 4 vans who should be transporting students today, 3 of them never showed up. That's right. 75% of the transportation a no show without a single call to families.
Dave drove Alex to school so that I could get on with starting my work day.
I try contacting the company to make sure Alex is on their transport list. After an hour on hold, I hang up. The school told me they would look into it but I want to make sure I know what's going on.
As we come round to afternoon, I suddenly realize I've got no idea whether or not a van will be available to transport Alex home. Now I have to try again. No answer at the transport company and leaving messages at the school.
We start to come down to the wire. Any other day, I would simply plan to drive down to get Alex and then race like mad to get to Nathan's school in time to pick him up. But this is the first day. No one is going to be on time and there's no margin for delays.
I decide it's time to commit to Plan B. Arrange for someone else to pick up Alex while I pick up Nathan. I've found a willing volunteer and call the school to leave a message about the pick up.
Someone answers this time and tells me the vans will all be there this afternoon.
Whew. I think. Except for the nagging wondering about whether or not this will actually happen. But even if it doesn't, they'll hold Alex until I can get there with Nathan.
It could have been a lot worse. But it also could have been a heck of a lot better.