Wednesday, November 15, 2006

On to the other side of the world.

I can't seem to not blog our long haul trips. Plus I need something to do to while away the hours as we travel to the other side of the world.

After spending a fun day in Manila, we got up at the ungodly hour of two in the morning and headed for the International Airport. When we got there, the check in counter was swamped with people. Then something amazing happened. This is the kind of thing that only happens in the Philippines. An airport worker saw that we had an infant with us, so he opened up another ticket counter just for us so we could check in and not have to wait in the lines. He said this was a special line just for us since we had a baby with us. Again, only in the Philippines.

So here we sit waiting at our gate, saying goodbye to the Philippines for three months. I still can't believe we are actually leaving. The flight to Hong Kong is just under two hours, we will stopover there for about two hours, then it's the big hop over the North Pole to Newark, NJ.

Later, in Hong Kong International Airport . . .

We are all enjoying Starbucks to warm us up. The kids got hot chocolate and Chris and I have carmel lattes, very nice. They also have a play place here so the kids can run around and get some activity before the fifteen hour sitfest on the plane. We were hoping to get row 32 seating since that is the row that has a crib that attaches to the bulkhead so Danny can sleep some place else rather than on either Chris or I. Unfortunately row 32 is already booked, I assume by another family traveling with a baby. We did get row 16, the forward compartment bulkhead. No crib but lots more legroom. Better than nothing.

The kids have started to run around on the playground. Faithy has spilled half her cocoa on Danny's blanket, so I better go and clean that up.

Later, on Continental flight number 99 Honk Kong to Newark, NJ . . .

According to the trip progress monitors, as I write this we are currently somewhere over Russia. Contrasting with what happened to us in the Manila airport, where our having Danny allowed us to jump in line--Chris saw that three adults, and no families with babies, were sitting in the row we wanted. We asked the flight attendants if we could switch with them. We had the same exact seat with the same extra legroom, just no crib option. It would have taken them all of five minutes to move their stuff, and their trip would have been no different. Unfortunately they did not want to be inconvenienced, the did not give up their seats. Again, contrast this with the treatment we received in Manila, when they saw we had a baby with us. We are pretty steamed. They could not get off their fat butts for just a few minutes to help us out.

Oh well, just thirteen more hours to go.

Later, somewhere over Alaska . . .

So I guess I am back in the United States now, or at least in American airspace. Since we have so much legroom, Eric is actually sleeping on the floor next to the bulkhead, Faithy is next to me, and Chris and Danny are in the seats behind us, with Danny sleeping peacefully in his own seat. He has been out for several hours now, it is so much easier this way, with us not having to hold him the entire flight. Eric is out like a light, and so is Faithy, curled up in a ball next to me. I am hoping to get a few winks myself. At this point in the trip, we have about eight more hours to go.

The movie choices suck big time. "You me and Dupree," give me a break. The kids channel is showing old cartoons so I will probably watch that. Or I could watch Chinese soap operas and practice my Mandarin. Actually I am not studying Mandarin Chinese. I only know the words for hello and thank you, and Gerneral Tso's Chicken.

Just seven hours and forty-eight minutes left.

Later, still not able to sleep . . .

The trip monitor says we are somewhere over Queen Elizabeth Island, Canada with just under six hours to go. Our arrival time is estimated at 1:55 the afternoon of Sunday November 12. Many hours, and a world away, we left Manila very early morning, Sunday the 12. This is what happens when you cross the International Date Line. Will try to get some sleep.

Finally on the ground . . .

We are in the United States, the customs immigration officer said to us, "Welcome back." It is good to be back in our native land. Notice I did not say it is good to be back "home," Iloilo is home.

We are sitting here at the gate waiting for our flight to Orlando, watching football on a big screen TV. Overall the long flight from Hong Kong went pretty well. Danny slept almost the entire flight, especially once he got his own seat to sleep on. Eric and Faithy traded the floor and they all got pretty good sleep. I finally dropped off for the last couple hours of the flight and got some real sleep, I even started drooling.

The game is over, the Jets beat the Patriots. Time to get on board.

At my Mom's house the next day . . .

The trip is finally over. Mom took us to Friday's for our first American meal. Got to her house around midnight, and just woke up, it's about 11:00 AM Monday morning. We all got some really good sleep, even Danny slept through the night. It is good to be at my Mom's. She spoils us with whatever food we want, trips to Disney, etc. This is the best place to get over jet lag.

1 comment:

  1. Anonymous9:25 AM

    Hey Dave, I enjoyed reading about your flight. My husband and I are taking our 5 month old daughter to Hong Kong next week. We are a Christian family and we have to attend a family wedding there. I am very nervous and anxious about this trip. I believe that coming across your blog was an answered prayer. Could you e-mail me at cmah15@hotmail.com and give me some encouragement/advice/support for this trip? I would really appreciate it. - Christine Cheung

    ReplyDelete