Saturday, March 28, 2009

One Down -- Two to Go...

Greetings from the Seoul Incheon Airport! We have made it through one leg of the trip safely and relatively peacefully! Here's a quick recap of the day so far...

Luba (Ivan's wife) called around 11:15am to say that Ivan was about 15 minutes out. SCORE! Tatiana's VISA was in Vladivostok. Whew! We all ate a quick lunch and finished packing. When Ivan and Sergei arrived, T took one look at Sergei and immediately started crying. She associates him with the car... not good!

The tears started as soon as she saw the car. Good news: Ivan actually had a car seat! Bad news: She HATED it! Should be an interesting ride home from the airport. I ended up taking her out of the car seat because she was getting really worked up. This won't be a splurge we can afford much longer...

We got to the airport and proceeded to get checked in. The Vlad airport does things a little differently than the US. As soon as you enter the check in "room" you go through a metal detector AND put your bags through the X-ray. From this point only ticketed passengers can go through. Sounds ok, right? Well imagine me, Rhonda, T in a stroller, 3 LARGE suitcases, a huge backpack, a roller computer bag, 2 purses AND a diaper bag. Yup -- it was interesting to say the least. To add to the madness, we had the singularly slowest check in ever. Not that things are speedy in Russia anyway -- but this was SLOW.

Finally it was boarding time and we were on to the bus to take us across the runway to the plane. To get onto the bus from the airport we had to go down a mess of steps and then jump into the bus. Russia is NOT what I'd call handicap/stroller accessible. Not in the least. While I may have passed the babooska test at the store, I actually got scolded on the bus by a young guy! I didn't mess with T's hat for the 2 minutes we were actually outside. Honestly, I don't even know where it is in all this packing madness. He informed me that it was "very dangerous for child to be outside with no hat". I wanted to tell him "when infant seats become mandatory in Russia, THEN you can lecture me about dangers, my friend" - but I just said, "it's 2 minutes, she'll be fine".

The plane ride was.... GET THIS... totally uneventful. Tatiana was a CHAMP. She didn't cry at all. No fussing during take off, no fussing when ear popped, NYET! She sat nicely for 90% of the time between Rhonda and I. She would get tired of just sitting sometimes, but for the most part she was perfection. The Korean Air ladies gave her a stuffed plane -- which we lost somehow in the 4 cubic feet that was our row. AND she got her own little kids meal. I'll tell you, Korean Air does it RIGHT.

We got to the airport and got our boarding passes for tomorrow. Good news is that we are all together AND we have a bulk head row -- but the bad news is that we are in the middle (the plane is 3/4/3 - and we are in the 4). Hopefully we'll end up having the 4th seat as well. I can't imagine the fool who'd want to sit next to us!! Haha.

Next stop was check in at the transit hotel. We really scored here. I told the lady that she may want to put us as far away from other people as possible -- in case T cries during the night (new place, new room, etc). Not only did we manage to get a crib for T to sleep in - Rhonda and I actually got our own wing - literally 2 rooms, all by themselves behind the little business center. We requested two rooms - so that we would have a place to go when T was falling asleep, but with this unique setting, I am actually sitting in the hallway outside our rooms. I think she's FINALLY asleep. I can't believe she's stayed up this long -- no afternoon nap and it's 9pm in Vladivostok. She was so tired at dinner that she was putting her head on the table. She wouldn't stop eating, however... but she had to rest her little cheek on the table. Very cute.

Tomorrow our big flight is @ noon Seoul time (13 hours ahead of the eastern time zone). Then after a quick layover in Chicago and a trip through customs and it's off to Detroit. I can't WAIT to get home!! Good night from Seoul!

15 comments:

Barb said...

I'm so excited for you that you're almost HOME! Hope you all get a good sleep and the long travelling day goes well!!!

Jennifer said...

Good luck on your last leg. We will be waitning for you at the airport.

Love the Robertsons

Heather said...

Wow - I am impressed with how smooth things are going. Sounds like T is being a champ!

Cindy said...

Amy--you are almost home! I can't wait to hear that you and T are in your house. I have really enjoyed reading your blog and experiencing the trip with you. Cindy

findingourdaughter said...

So glad to hear the first flight with Tania went so well. I'm thinking you are on the second part of your journey at this point...and I'm praying all is well. Not much longer and you will be home!! Little T will arrive at her forever home and be a US citizen. Yahoooooo!
Hugs and blessings,
Angie

kate said...

So glad you have an uneventful flight! Really, who could ask for more than that? I hope your next flight is as uneventful.

True Story said...

YAAAY!!! By the time you read this T will be an American! Have a great trip home!

Rob,Dawn,Catherine and Iain said...

How exciting. You are almost home. We are waiting for our referral for a little girl. We should hear something in April/May.We live in Brighton Michigan. I saw that you are flying into Detroit. I was hoping you might live near us. I would love Maura to have somefriends that are from Russia. Our blog page is http://maurailise.blogspot.com/

We wish you all the best with your new daughter. Best of Luck. Dawn

Sara said...

Yeah Amy!! It's actually happening, you're bringing her home!! We're so excited for you and can't wait for your next update. :)

Sweet dreams...

jennyjohnson said...

Amy-
I'm so glad you updated, I've been thinking of you all morning. Your little sweetie sounds like a real champ...you'll all be home before you know it!
Jenny

jeanette wunderly said...

Glad to hear things are going well. Good luck with the rest of your journey! The Russians would have field day with me letting my boys play outside with only a sweatshirt in 45 degree weather!

Kim said...

Woooo whooooo! Almost there! Way to go T, what a great flyer you are!!! :) Safe travels!

Troy and Rachel said...

SAfe travels - I can't believe you are on your way home - I know you can!!!! I'm hoping T is as great on the next two as the previous!!

Roger and Joanne said...

Is a transit hotel in the airport?

Wow...I'm so amazed and happy that she did so well for you on the plane. Maybe she'll be a flight attendant when she grows up.

It seemed like it went quickly for me here in the USA, but I bet you're are excited to be back on american soil.

Congratulations on coming home and safe travels!!

Laura said...

Hi Amy!

So glad to hear that the first leg of the trip has been so successful!

I wish you calm trip into Detroit where I'm sure the paparatzi will be greeting you guys!

Many blessings,
Laura