Why don't we go back to the beginning...( I so wanted to insert a line here from "Princess Bride"...)
Our last weekend in the states were hectic, but not quite as bad as we were expecting. We finished our last training class late Saturday morning, and spent the rest of the day packing. My (Kevin's) parents had come up from Tennessee to help and spend a few more days together, so they kept Adah occupied and pitched in where we needed help.
|Mimi distracting Adah|
|Adah stuffing Ya-Ya into a suitcase (which we found later)|
We got to the airport where my parents and sister-in-law were already waiting, got in line, and started talking with the check in guy, who "just happened" to go to the same church as the Chief Operations Officer at MAF HQ. All of our baggage fees were waived and we had an extra bag! The security line was long and slow, so we spent a few extra minutes saying our tearful goodbye's and see you later's. We made it through security, waved goodbye one last time, and walked to the gate, where they promptly checked our carry-on bags through to Kinshasa, for free. We boarded immediately.
|Preparing to go through security|
The flight to Chicago was about 3 hours, and un-eventful. Adah did great. We arrived in Chicago around 12 local time and had six hours to kill, so we got something to eat, and then found this awesome play area for Adah.
We wore her out and even managed to get her to take a nap for a short while, and then finally it was time to board around 6PM. Adah was acting sleepy, then they dimmed the cabin lights for takeoff and she passed right out for the takeoff and climb out...then they turned the lights back on for dinner and drink service. She was not pleased, but even then only screamed for a minute or two then was fine. She ate with us, played a little bit, then I rocked her to sleep again, and laid her down in her seat. I think all in all, we slept 3 hours on the flight over to Brussels. We landed there around 9AM Brussels time (1 AM Mountain time-what we were used to).
We ended up having to go back around through security to get on our flight to Kinshasa, but managed fine and got to the gate about 30 minutes prior to boarding. Tasha went to go try and use the phone and took Adah with her. They met a couple of guys from Nigeria who were not princes, nor did they ask for our credit card numbers in return for giving us large sums of money because they couldn't access their bank account, but one did ask for Adah's hand in marriage (so she could get him an American VISA-again, not the credit card kind...).
Anyway, we boarded the plane at 10:45 AM and were on our merry way to Kinshasa. After the first meal, Adah was struggling a bit. Tasha tried and tried, and finally, exasperatedly asked if I would try to get her to sleep. I took her, and she passed out in less than a minute. Not that I'm bragging or anything... She slept for about 3 hours, and we managed to get a few winks in ourselves. We landed around 5 in Kinshasa, de-planed, and got on a bus that drove us about 200 yards to the customs office. Our Program Manager was there to meet us on the ramp, but couldn't come through customs so he told us he would see us on the other side. As soon as we entered into customs, they saw we had a kid and put is in the shortest possible queue. After a total of 1 minute and no questions, we were through to collect our bags, or rather, to meet the guy who was going to be getting our bags for us. We then went to the car, and waited about an hour or so for the bags to come off. All of our bags made it, no damaged stuff, nothing missing. It was around 7 by then, and dark, so we made our way back to where we were staying. More next time!