February 11, 2004

We Made It!

After an exhausting 24 hours of travel, Scout and I made it into Hamburg. Scout did really well in her crate and throughout the car ride. Both of us were very tired but we made it all in one piece. And before I go into the details of our apartment here in Hamburg, I blogged our travels. Okay, I didn't actually blog them. I wrote them down on a piece of paper, which I will now transcribe. Warning: it's long!

Monday, 2:45 pm Pacific Standard Time
It's blogging the super old-fashioned way. That is, pencil and paper. I've just boarded the plane and am getting comfortable, relatively. It's a good thing I'm short because they really pack you in here. On board is my worst nightmare--a high school group. There is actually a teenager next to me but he has been very nice and polite so that's good. Checking Scout in went well. I ended up having to attach her water bowl and tape her food to the crate. They said they will give her water before we take off. She did a lot of panting. Hopefully she'll do less panting and barking if she can't see me. There's another dog aboard so maybe they can communicate with each other.

Jamie drove me to the airport and we had a bite to eat at Nancy's. Oh great, there's a little kid behind me and he's already banging against my seat. Have to put a stop to that quickly. Looks like our movies are Anger Management and Chicago. Chicago I've seen twice and Anger Management I'm not all that interested in, but I'll probably watch them anyway because it makes the time go faster.

7 hours, 57 minutes left to go
according to Air Show. Go Kevin's dad! Air Show is the program that runs on the tv screen that shows a map tracking your plane as well as information on how much time is left on the flight, airspeed, altitude, time at destination, and outside temperature. Kevin's dad works on Air Show. I wanted to point this out to my seatmate but I thought that would be kind of geeky.

Speaking of my seatmate, we had a little chat. His school group of 44 students is flying from Frankfurt to Milan and touring Italy for 12 days. Reminds me of the class trips I took in high school to France and Italy. And the band trip to Vancouver. Not to mention the two middle school trips to Washington DC. I swear, when I'm a parent I'll never chaperone a trip like that. Not that my parents ever did, I'm just saying. Send the kid off and tell them to have a good time, but no thank you for me.

I am seated one row behind the bulkhead and the woman facing the wall has a baby. The flight attendant set up what looks like a portable crib against the wall. Pretty cool. No crying from the baby yet. My nose is running like mad and I have exactly 1 Kleenex. This happens to me every time. You'd think I would be better prepared. I'm going to have to stock up from the bathroom.

Just finished the first movie
It turned out to be School of Rock with Jack Black instead of Anger Management. That was one I've been wanting to see. I love Jack Black. It was a very fun movie, except in the closing credits the girl on the bass got gypped. I think we're about halfway through the flight now (no Air Show display) and it's been pretty painless. I wonder how the Scouter is doing. Poor thing. I hope she's warm enough in her sweater.

And speaking of warm enough, I can't believe how some people dress (or don't) for the plane. I saw two of the high school girls wearing these super-tight tank tops that are little more than sports bras. Now I don't care what they wear, but honey, you're going to freeze in that! I mean wear some sleeves!

These seats could not possibly be closer together. You can't even bend down to pick up something off of the floor because the seat in front of you is so close. I've had to do this weird foot/leg maneuver to get ahold of my water bottle. Good lord!

Just finished the second movie
It was Freaky Friday, not Chicago. Guess the magazine lied. It was really funny. Now I want to go back and watch the original. Unfortunately it didn't eat up as much time as I would have liked. Too bad they didn't show the extended version of Lord of the Rings.

Bathroom Break
I waited for the lady on the aisle (I'm at the window) to wake up so I could go to the bathroom. It wasn't urgent but you know one must take these opportunities when they arise. It was nearly impossible to get out of the seat. Unbelievable. Should try to get some rest now.

2 hours left
Well, so much for trying to get to sleep. No sooner had I retrieved my blanket off the floor (not easy), inflated my pillow, and taken off my glasses did they flip on all of the lights in the plane. Air Show came back on and we have 2 hours left instead of the 3 I thought we did. Well, jetlag is going to be a challenge, I can tell you that. I'm sure I'll sleep in the car from Frankfurt to Hamburg but I wish I'd gotten some on the plane.

And that's the end of my handwritten notes. To sum up, the baby never cried (amazing) and the high schoolers were very well behaved. Picking up Scout was a breeze. I never even had to show the paperwork or anything. Of course, I casually walked through the "Nothing to declare" line at customs but no one stopped me.

Kevin was right there. He had taken the train down to Frankfurt and we rented a car back. The car ride was uneventful. I did fall asleep, though not for very long. I was feeling quite ill but taking a nap helped. At one point we had to pull over and Kevin took a little catnap as well. By the time we made it to the apartment I'd been traveling for nearly 24 hours. It was about 5:00 in the afternoon local time. I pretty much passed out for a nap and got up around 10:00 and had some dinner. I slept through the night but woke up at 5:00 am. Scout was wandering the apartment, apparently suffering from jetlag as well. But I made it back to sleep and got up at 9:30.

Posted by at February 11, 2004 02:10 AM

Congratulations on your safe arrival!

Posted by: Erik at February 11, 2004 02:28 PM

Although this post has Kevin listed as the author, it's actually written by me. I was using his computer yesterday.

Posted by: Shelby at February 11, 2004 02:33 PM

The account of the trip was, as usual, very well written, Shelby. I enjoyed reading it. I had been worried about Scout and the cold. How cold does it get in the cargo area? As for the girls in the tank tops...I could have told you all about that. My 11 year old wears a tank top when the temperature is in the single digits (Fahrenheit)!

Posted by: Deb at February 11, 2004 04:32 PM

I think that up people college age and younger just don't feel the cold... I remember while at Albion in the winter it was not unusual to see people walking about in a sweatshirt and shorts.

Posted by: Erik at February 14, 2004 06:44 AM
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