Monday, September 2, 2013

Day 11 - Homeward Bound

I guess Day 11 technically started in the air...probably somewhere over Europe. 

Miraculously, I slept for the first 11 hours of the 14 hour flight. Well, mostly slept. It wasn't good sleep, but it passed the time. I woke up about every hour because inevitably some body part falls asleep. Butt cheeks and feet are the main culprits. There were a couple of movies I was going to watch, but didn't get to!

I woke up for the dinner they served not long after take off (rice and chicken - neither of which I'll be eating for a long time once I get home), and got up to get some water and use the bathroom twice. The air is so ridiculously dry on the plane! They need to invent little mini-humidifiers for travelers or something. Maybe I'll do that... ;)

By the time I had had enough sleep, we only had 2.5 hours left! Yes! That really wasn't bad at all. 

Ate breakfast (eggs and potato) and landed in Newark just a little before 4am. Yikes. That's early!

Breakfast. Leaves plenty to be desired. 

The airport wasnt even open it was so early! Well, I'm sure it was technically open, but immigration wasnt, so we had to sit on the plane for about 20 minutes waiting on them. 

Finally for off, and of course there was another fiant plane from Tel Aviv right net to ours who had been waiting too. So we all got off at once and flooded immigration. Why in the world would they only have three people working when they have to know they have international flights waiting?! Ugh. Maybe my least favorite part of traveling. 

The passport control line

Made it through that and customs with no problem, and went straight to the United desk to see if I could change my flight. Thankfully there were two people sitting there. Nothing else was even open! I told them my situation - that I wanted to change my flight from the 8:30pm departure to the 8:30am departure. All I had to do was scan my boarding pass at the kiosk, push a button to select the flight I wanted, and that was it! So easy and no charge, which was nice because when I called United before I left they said I would have to fly standby and pay $75 plus any fare difference just to do that!

The original plan was for me to rent a car and drive out to the Hamptons to see Matt, who is out there right now with a friend. But it's a 2.5 hour drive out there and the same back tonight. Then is have to pay for the rental car. And I've already been traveling (without a shower, mind you) for close to three days now. So I'm ready to get home. :)

With my new boarding pass in hand, I hopped on the AirTrain to terminal A ... And there it was. JAMBA-FREAKING-JUICE. I have been craving a fruit smoothy like no other since Ive been gone, and Jamba is one of my favorites. I just about sprinted over to the counter and ordered three things. I didn't care. I was hungry and thirsty and vitamin c deprived!

SOOOO good!

I sat down and thoroughly enjoyed every last drop of everything I got. It was only 5:30am and I still had three hours to kill before my flight home. I guess it's time for the dreaded airport bathroom was cloth bath, haha. It's never fun, but really pretty necessarily today. I am starting to smell! 

All set up and ready to bathe ... in the sink!

I've got it down by now. Febreeze clothes first. Face wash next.  Then armpits.  I even shaved them! Then quickly run in to the stall for clean pants (you can't do that on in public) and pray the whole time no one steals all your stuff.  Then feet, then some makeup, and re-pack up!

You should see the looks people give me, splashing around with my feet up in the sink, haha. It takes some time, but so worth it to feel somewhat clean!

All set. Rocking my new (febreezed) Nepal shirt!

While I was re-packing, I came across these:

My malaria pills. Woops! Sure didn't take a one of those the whole time I was gone! The whole "may cause dizziness" didn't sound fun to me. So I passed. And really, the only mosquitos we saw were in Mumbai and Visak. And I think I did pretty well swatting them all away. (Mosquitos don't like me anyways!)

I still had about two hours to go until takeoff, but I went through security to my gate anyways to relax and charge my phone a little bit. Somehow I got hungry again - after my triple jamba breakfast. So I went to a little store and got two bowls of cereal and milk. Man did I miss cereal, too. Fruit and cereal - I have them every morning for breakfast, so this was nice to have again!

My non-stop flight to KC on united Express was a tiny little plane again. Seriously. I am not a fan of those. There wasnt a prayer of a chance my bag was fitting on that, so I had to gate check. I tried to tell the guy it was fragile and had a wooden elephant in it from India, but he had ear plus in and just grabbed from me and tossed it to the next guy. I am going to be furious and united will be getting an earful from me if that thing is broken when I get home!!

We sat on the runway for over 30 minutes before we could take off. There were 4 planes ahead of us and they let them take off in 8 minute intervals. Ugh. 

Once we finally got airborne, the flight was almost 3 hours. I was really ready to be home by the time I stepped off in KC at 10:30am. Felt like 9pm for me, so a nap was definitely in order!

My mom picked me up and just like that, India was over. 

  • Approximately 6,915 kilometers (4,296 miles) covered in 11 days
  • Over 1,200 pictures taken on my iPhone
  • 6 flights, 3 train rides, two rickshaw rides, 1 motorcycle ride, and countless cab rides
  • More new sights and smells than you can ever imagine

I'll have to do some sort of re-cap of this intoxicating country when I re-adjust to US time next week.  But for now, I'm home, unpacked, load 1 of laundry is in, and I'm taking a nap!

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