Traveling in and of itself is an adventure! Airplanes offer unique views of the world from above and beautiful sunrises/sunsets. So this post is dedicated to the travel portion of getting from Germany to The States and back.
At 3am on Thursday January 7th 2016 my alarm went off and thus began a journey that I don't really want to count how many hours it took. I showered, curled my hair, finished packing, then Chris helped lug my suitcases down the stairs. I had told Fox and Jane that I'd be gone when they woke up, but Fox must have heard us because he came downstairs and started crying. It broke my heart! He really loves me and would miss me! We hugged and said goodbye then I made my way to the Nuremberg airport in just under an hour. Driving makes me nervous so I had to find a bathroom stat. Luckily there was one in the parking garage. My purse fell off my suitcase and my camera came crashing down. Luckily it wasn't broken. I checked my bags, got through security, then went on the hunt for some water. I found some but when I opened the bottle it went "whoooosh". Carbonated water. Not my favorite. I recycled it then found a ginormous bottle of still water. The flight left on time and arrived in Paris about an hour and a half later. It was pitch black outside the entire flight, so no photos from that trip.
Once I got to Paris I quickly found out that the Charles de Gaulle airport is HUGE. Like, MASSIVE. I had to take a 10 minute shuttle bus to get to another part of the airport and then walk about a mile (not even exaggerating) to the right terminal where I then had to go through passport checks (got a France stamp in my book, woohoo!) and security again. I wasn't expecting to have to go through security a second time. There went my brand new, huge, hardly drank any, water bottle! Oh well. I found my gate, and some pretty macaroons at Ladurée.
An eye-catching bathroom in Paris. I love the flaming red and hot pink right next to each other. Such a vivid contrast!
The massive airplane that would take me from Paris to LA. It was two levels, 10 people per row in 3, 4, and 3 seats, and I was in row 57, so I'm guessing there were over 600 people on my flight! I thought for sure there'd be someone famous, it was Paris to LA afterall, but I didn't see anyone.
Both flights of the day were on time, nay, even left early! While I was waiting to board I realized I hadn't seen my car keys in awhile... I sorted through my entire bag, twice, to no avail. I vividly remembered putting them right on top in my purse after I had locked the car. But then I remembered my purse had fallen over in the bathroom in Nuremberg... I hoped hoped hoped that perhaps I had stashed them in my jacket pocket which I often do with car keys and I had shoved my jacket in my suitcase once I got inside the Nuremberg airport. No need to contact Chris yet and make him worry, they were hopefully just in my pocket. But I still had to worry about it the ENTIRE 11 hour flight. That was awesome. And did I mention the bathroom was about 20 feet from where I parked? Someone could so easily have picked up the keys and drove away with our car... And those keys had our one and ONLY key to that car! We bugged the guy we bought it from at the Nissan dealership for well over six months for a spare key. Never got it. So the whole flight I was wondering how much it would cost to have Nissan manufacture a new key and overnight it to us, so on and so forth. It was a long 11 hours. Read on to find out what happened.
One really neat feature about this airplane is it had 3 cameras! One on the tail, one on the nose, and one underneath. It was a little disconcerting at times to actually see how high up we were, but it was also pretty cool.
On the plane I watched The Martian, 17 Again, Good Will Hunting, and The Longest Ride and worked on my stitching project. We flew so far up north over Iceland and Greenland that it got dark and most everyone slept. Not me. I can't sleep on airplanes. The turbulence was SO BAD at one point it woke everyone up and the stewardesses started running around telling everyone to sit down. I really really really hate flying.
We landed in LA about a half hour early (yay!) and thus began the security and passport and customs checks. It took about an hour and a half or so to get through all that and my bags were waiting for me at the baggage claim. WHAT ABOUT THE KEYS?!? I opened up my bags, found my jacket, checked the pocket, and THEY WEREN'T THERE. OMG!!!!!!! So I was totally freaking out and contacted Chris but he wouldn't check his phone for another 6 or 7 hours because it was the middle of the night in Germany (and boy did I feel it!). Long story short, Chris emailed every email he could find at the Nuremberg airport and by some miracle of all miracles someone had found them and turned them in. HUUUUUGE weight off my shoulders. Chris drove to the airport during his lunch break and retrieved the keys. Crises averted.
So I went through one last customs check with my bags then I found my mom, sister, and grandma and we laughed and hugged and made our way to Disneyland! Separate recaps of all the days coming soon. Also, just wanted to note how weird and strange and awesome all at the same time it was to be back in Los Angeles! It's where we lived for four years before moving to Germany so it felt like I was back home. The LA skyline and Hollywood signs pulled at my heartstrings! Lots of places have a piece of my heart.
Then CHA happened! It was amazing and more. Pics coming soon :)
On Tuesday January 12th 2016 I flew with about 5 other American Crafts peeps from the Long Beach airport to Salt Lake City. We waved goodbye to the warmth, sunshine, and palm trees.
I was trying to take a picture of the LA skyline, but then the plane turned and it was out of my view. Got some funky lights instead.
Sun setting over Catalina.
We landed in Salt Lake on time, found my bags, took a shuttle out to the car rental place, picked up my car, and drove to Provo an hour away. Easy breezy!
We lived in Utah for 6 years before moving to Los Angeles. So, once again, I felt like I was home! AHHH! Feeling all the feelings. I stayed up talking to my grandparents until about midnight, then went to bed so I could get up early and go to work the next morning. Recap of that coming soon too!
On Sunday January 17th 2016 I woke up at 5am to start making my way back to Germany. The sunrise over the Wasatch Mountains was immaculate.
It was a 3 hour flight from Salt Lake to Atlanta. I'd never been to Georgia before! I listened to Taylor Swift, Justin Bieber, and Linkin Park to pass the time. Luckily the flight was once again on time, even a bit early, because I only had an hour to get to my next flight. Also I wondered why I was flying to Atlanta of all places for a flight to Paris. Chris informed me that Atlanta is the busiest airport in the United States! I thought it was LAX. But the "Departures" board definitely confirms that stat (as well as a quick Google search).
I found my gate quickly, got a bagel for lunch, then a short while later everyone boarded the plane. Once again, the flight left on time, woohoo!
The flight from Atlanta to Paris was 7.5 hours. I watched Pitch Perfect 2, Cinderella, The Martian (again), and started Catch Me If You Can. The turbulence was once again nerve-wracking and scary. I don't want to talk about it.
We landed in Paris at 5am the following day (Monday January 18th 2016). I had a 2.5 hour layover so I tried to rest a bit. The sun was just starting to rise when we boarded our little plane.
Straight out of the camera, no filter, no editing. Beautiful morning in France!
The flight left on time, was only an hour long, no turbulence (YAYAYAY!) and landed a whole 15 minutes early.
Germany. HOME SWEET HOME!
My bags even made it home! It was a wonderful reunion with Chris and the kids. I missed them so much!!! I've had some pretty bad luck flying internationally in the past so I'm thanking my lucky stars that every single one of the 6 flights I went on to, within, and back from the states was on time and then some! But I'm happy not to be flying again for oh... two more months :) Then it's LONDON BABY!