It's 2 a.m. and I'm up again. I really thought that after the past 2 nights of forcing a big sleep chunk (12 hours each night to be exact) with the help of Tylenol PM I would be over the jetlag hump. But it appears not as I went to sleep at about 10:30 last night and promptly woke up at 1:30 feeling fully awake. Not cool.
So, you get to hear about about trip. Not the whole trip as I do hope to sleep again at some point, but we'll start with a quick recount of our departure from India...
Katherine knew we were coming to Virginia. I don't know if she remembered when, but she figured it out by snooping through my iMac calendar months earlier. Figures. Rebecca had an idea but no specifics. The boys didn't have a clue. So about an hour before we left for the airport and just when they were thinking about changing into PJs and hitting the hay, we told them our plans. Nicholas set about packing when I told him it was done and even precious, smelly Woof-Woof was already stored away. The boys were thrilled as wistful moments were had the previous days. Oh, how they wished they could be in Virginia too. We made it to the airport in record time, passed through two levels of security before getting to the check-in line which then took 1 hour and 45 minutes to sit through. Jonathon prfoundly commented: "The Indian flag lies. It says India keeps moving, but it doesn't. It stops." I'm sure he learned that from Indian Studies at school, from the wheel in the middle of the flag.
It didn't help that one of the tickets, mine in fact, had the incorrect gender listed and the reservations numbers weren't consecutive. That alone took a half hour to fix, after previous flyers had already held up the line with their stuanch belief that they could have an enormous suitcase and more than the alotted -1- carry-on per person on board with them. The Chennai airport is ridiculous on that front, allowing a single carry-on. It's the airports doing, not the airline, and it doesn't matter the size. A purse or a laptop bag is the same as a bona fide carry-on to them and they will not let you bring more.
Jonathon fell asleep while the counter people wrestled with the manager or the computer or something, insisting I was female. Why that didn't take a single click of a button I do not know. But he got in a 30 minute power nap and was good to go until we boarded. Then we all had a miserable attempt at sleep in cattle car, something I have sworn much like Scarlett O'Hara to never do again. Awful awful. Awful.
The 2 hours in Frankfurt were a blur, the second flight was relatively painless and we landed to see my parents and the girls waiting for us. But right before that was Immigration and our Immigration Officer Jami. We hadn't been home in two years and I brought a gift for the person who officially welcomed us home. Officer Jami got a little elephant to hang on his cubicle.
Being back was a beautiful thing, seeing the girls, my parents, and made even better by the glorious weather outside. I already wrote about the ease of the U.S., just driving down the road can be a pleasure. No one drives in India for fun. Ever. But those wide, clean, open roads of home are the stuff of dreams. You have to live in India or someplace like it to understand.
I need to pull out my notebook and see all the stuff we did before going on. As it is, it's now 3:15 in the morning and I really need to try to get some additional sleep. Here's hoping.