Sunday, March 05, 2006

We made it

And thank God I had my parents with me.

Why?

Because of the stuff. So much stuff. All this stuff for 2 kids and 1 adult. I had one suitcase and my purse, everything else listed here was for the children.

2 carseats
1 travel crib
3 suitcases
1 diaper bag
1 carry on bag
1 purse
1 stroller

I carried Kyra through the airports strapped in the Baby Bjorn carrier, while pushing Blaine in the stroller. I hung the diaper bag over the stroller handle, carried my purse on my back, and dragged the rolling carry-on suitcase behind me. I felt like a pack mule. My mom had her rolling suitcase, a bag full of sippie cups, all of our jackets. My dad carried the carseat that we used on the plane for Kyra, which is a huge beast of a seat (we checked Blaine's carseat. He is big enough to ride without one, thankyoujesus). My parents deserve a medal for all the schlepping they did.

But we made it. From Miami to London with a 3 hour layover - which you need at Heathrow just to get from one terminal to the next - then a stop in Yerevan to let people off the plane and refuel, then a short hop, 30 minutes total flying time, from Yerevan to Tbilisi.

My parents are already experiencing the joys of this part of the world. As we were taking off from Yerevan for the short flight to Tbilisi, the pilot comes on the intercom to inform us that the first 15 or 30 seconds of our take off run will be nice and smooth, but then will get VERY bumpy and that the plane will start shaking. But we are not to be concerned, you see, it's not a problem with the plane. The folks in Yerevan have only finished repaving the first 1/3 of their take-off runway. Needless to say, it was an interesting take-off.

When we landed in Tbilisi, my dad looks out and asked if we really had to haul all of our crap down the stairs to the tarmac. He assumed there would be jetways like there are at real airports. Oh, no no no, I informed him. We aren't fancy shmancy like those people in Yerevan (who actually have 2 or 3 jetways, unbelievably). We do it the old fashioned way, down the stairs to a bus to the terminal. The lovely flight attendants helped us carry all of our stuff down from the plane. I'm not so sure they were just being nice. I think they just wanted us OFF the damn plane so that they could go home. Naturally, with all the stuff we had, plus the two kids, we were always the last family off the plane.

Once in Tbilisi, David met us at the airport, we cleared immigration, grabbed our luggage and headed home. David, Kyra, Blaine and I in one car, my mom, dad, a driver from the embassy and all the luggage in another car. Once we got to the house, my mom asked me if we had taken the "senic route". It was after midnight - why would I take the senic route at a time of day when there is nothing for them to see?? They just figured that because the trip from the airport was so long and seemingly circular, that we had decided to go the long way. Nope. That's just the way home.

And that's where I am. Home. It's great to be here.

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