Tuesday, October 14, 2008
International travel-this is a long one
The trip back was fairly uneventful, except for the beginning. We got to the Manas International Airport around 4am. Security wasnt opened so we stood by the door.. getting our place in line. One thing we learned very quickly (in Wash DC on the outbound flight) there is really no order to boarding a plane.. or any form of a 'line' with the Russian people. When they finally opened the doors Mom and I held our ground and only let 2 people in front of us.. then... the problem. The security guy kept asking us for tickets. We tried to tell him our tickets were at the check in counter and all we had was our confirmation from Orbitz, which he looked at like it was written in a foreign language lol.. after 3 tries he motioned for us to 'get out of the way' and he let a few more people through. In the meantime a woman came from the check in counter with a passenger manifest, thank goodness, and we handed him our passports. He was trying to match our names with the names on the list and couldnt figure it out so I had to point to our names on the list. Whew, the guy was on Moms last nerve (she didnt like the pushing or the brusqueness of the people). Apparently, in Bishkek, they screen the the luggage BEFORE you check it, so we sent the bags thru the scanner and went to the desk. A very nice lady at the desk helped us get the bags checked all the way thru to IAD, but we had to check at the transit desk in Moscow to get tickets for the trip to Washington.. uh oh. We had visited the Transit desk on the way there and it wasnt a pleasant experience (think pushing and brusqueness--in Russian). Oh well we'll cross that bridge when we get there. We are our way to Moscow and one flight attendant in particular is grating on Mom's nerves.. I think we were both tired, sad, frustrated, intimidated, all sorts of emotions and she said 'I'm going to complain about her'...I asked her (with a little giggle) Who are you going to complain to?.....I think that was just what we needed to bring everything back into perspective and 'go with the flow'. We had a little laugh and hoped that everyone thought we were laughing at them.. By the time we got to Moscow we were determined that we were going to get down to business and not let anyone mess with us.. grr grr.. lol. The transit desk went off without a hitch we just gave them our passports and asked for seats together.. 'Yes' the woman said and proceded to give us tickets for 11G and 12E.. WHAT! Awwww crap, those arent together. 'Go with the flow' .. It all worked out, a little Russian woman didnt want to sit in the bulkhead cause she couldnt stretch out her legs so she traded with mom. Woo hoo. Customs in Washington was great.. a guy wanted to push past us but, we were on my turf now and I just put my luggage cart solidly in his way. hehe. We have decided to go with British airways for a better chance of English for the majority of the trip... All in all it was an adventure with an awesome reward in that I met my son and had a wonderful visit with him. I cant wait to bring him home.