Friday, March 16, 2012

Half the Fun is Getting There, Right?

Wellll... I made it! Hello from Sydney!! (How Oprah do I sound?!?!?)

I actually made it into Sydney earlier than expected this morning... how often does THAT happen?! I took it as a good omen, if you will. The travel experience was... well, at least it's done. All I have to say is... to all my friends/coworkers who have flight status and use it for international flights... congratulations.

I'm certainly not bitter in the least. But let me back up.

So, my journey began by being stuck in some godawful traffic on the way to O'Hare. God bless Chicago (I do kind of miss it already!). In any event, I was trying to get to O'Hare early enough to catch a 5:50 PM flight, rather than the 7:30 PM flight I'd originally booked, given the super tight connection (40 minutes!!) I would have in LA. However, I get to the airport and holy mother! International terminal lines galore... and the line to try to get flights switched was ri-diculous (and the attendant informed me that I wouldn't even make it in time to get the 5:50 PM flight as it was). Sigh. Oh well. I wasn't all too concerned... I mean, it would suck if I missed my connection, but it is what it is right?

In any event, I get through security and start heading to my gate... when I spot a United customer service desk. Since I had hours left to kill, I figured it wouldn't hurt just to do a friendly little inquiry about switching my flight... I mean, there WAS no line after all. And... well, God bless United. For a mere $75 change fee, they were able to switch me right on up to the 5:50 PM flight... no wait, no hassle, nothing! Sweet. Success.

So, off I headed to LA. Once in LA, I figured now would be a good time to eat something considering I had yet to eat anything all day long (what?! I had a busy day!). So, what did I choose?

Here's the thing. If you know me, you know I never eat McDonald's (or much of any fast food, really). The idea kind of just grosses me out. But I was S-T-A-R-V-I-N-G. And call me nostalgic, but I figured I might as well get my American eating in while I could.

Shortly after scarfing down what can only be described as chemically processed variations of questionable "meat" (read: chicken nuggets), our flight started boarding. My heart went a little a'flutter in anticipation... I mean, I wasn't exactly looking forward to this longass flight, but my vacation was finally starting!!

Well, this anticipation lasted all of about five minutes. Because once I boarded and realized the space I had to deal with for the next 12-13 hours... well, come on. You'd be a little disconcerted too. To give you an idea of what the space issues were looking like, here is me around hour 7 (please disregard the hair, the glasses... well, everything except for the space restrictions which is what this picture was primarily intended to convey):

Trust me, it was an experience. To say the least. I mean, literally- there was NO. ROOM. I guess that kind of explains why my entire BODY is aching today, but whatever.

No problem! Because at the end of it all... I'm here! I'm in Sydney! As soon as we landed, I was all bright-eyed and bushy-tailed, ready and waiting to begin my Australian journey... really take in all things authentically Australian. So imagine my surprise when, upon exiting customs, one of the first things that was there to greet me was...

Lord. You really can't go anywhere without good ol' America following along, now can you? Sigh. In any event, shortly after making it through customs, I was greeted by one of my high school best friends... the one and only Katherine! (No last names for Internet security purposes! You are welcome :)) It was all very delightful, really.

Unfortunately, it was super rainy when we stepped outside the airport, but after making it back to Kathy and Liam's apartment, I felt as good as new (to an extent, at least)! Today's been fairly low-key... just some coffeetime downtown...

The starts of some sightseeing (to be completed in more detail later in the week)...

And now... some cozy teatime before more reunions this evening!

Till next time! (I know you guys are waiting on the edge of your seats, really.) Happy St. Patty's Day, btw!

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