Friday, October 10, 2008
The Epic Journey
Well, it started off VERY badly, but overall the journey to our new home in Kuwait went better than expected. We were suppose to fly out of Milwaukee on US Airways to Charlotte then to Dulles, then switch over to Untied and fly directly to Kuwait City. We got to the MKE airport and got through security without any problems and Ryan even was able to talk to the United agent and get us upgraded to Economy Plus on the long flight over. We think "Wow, things are going so smoothly, maybe this won't be so bad." HAHAHA! Our very first flight ends up being delayed so long that we are now not going to be able to make our connection. And US Air can't even find a way to get us to Dulles! The best they can do is get us on a Midwest Airlines flight into Reagan, and we decide to take that flight. Now here is the bad news..........When they decide to do this it is 12:40pm and the Midwest flight leaves at 1:20!! AND we have to go back to the US Air ticket counter to pick up our bags then run to the Midwest counter and check in our bags and get boarding passes! Then we have to go back through security with 2 kids, 6 bags and 2 carseats! Oh if there could have been a video of this! Calvin ran his little legs off! So we get our bags, get our boarding passes, and now we are in line for security. Then one more thing.........We get hit with extra security measures that not even our military IDs will get us out of! Can you believe it! They pat each of us down and have to go through every bag! At this point I am practically in tears and think there is NO way we are making this flight. We are all done being patted down, but we are waiting on our bags, so I grab my diaper bag (the only one done) and RUN like HELL to the gate leaving Ryan behind putting on the kids shoes. I have the boarding passes and as I start running I hear them calling our name over the loud speaker that our flight is now departing! As I approach the gate the agent sees me coming and says she can take our boarding passes and my bag and I can go back and help Ryan with the kids. At this point people actually start feeling bad for us and helping us out. We finally get all of us and all our bags to the plane only to find out they sat us in an exit row, where the kids clearly can NOT sit. So now as we are standing by the cockpit with the entire plane of people staring at us and getting pissed that we are delaying their flight they have to start moving passengers around to find us seats. They were able to clear out the back row for us, but we still had to strap in 2 carseats and get the kids strapped in to them before we can even pull away from the gate! People were LOVING us! Now thankfully this is where the terrible part of our trip ends and the rest is smooth sailing. We all fell asleep on that flight shortly after take off and slept about 80% of the way. We were very nervous that our bags may not have made it, but as soon as we got to the baggage claim one of our bags was right there in front of us. We caught a shuttle over to Dulles and had no problem checking in to our international flight. The kids did great in the airport and also did amazing on the flight over. They slept very well and when they woke up they played quietly with the books and toys we brought for them. We didn't have any major meltdowns the entire trip! When we landed in Kuwait we were all feeling pretty darn fresh and calm considering the long flight. Ryan and I both commented that it was one of the best international flights we have ever been on! I will try and write more about our first week later today or tomorrow.