Friday, March 27, 2009

Travelling

Well, it is 11:15pm PDT and we are at the LaQuinta LAX in Los Angeles.

Our flight out of China was the worst flight we have ever taken, but we survived. We arrived at the airport in Gaungzhou with plenty of time. Th eline was slow and the security check was thorough, but we passed with the only problem being they did not like the number of insulin syringes I was carrying in my backback, so they kept 10 of the 13 there and missed the other 30 in the laptop bag!

We boarded on time, but they had setup a SECOND security inspection in the jetway! Everyone had their carry-ons reinspected and mainly they took our liquids that we had bought after passing the main security checkpoint.

The plane pushed away from the gate about an hour later than scheduled, but we were only a half an hour late arriving in LA. The seats were the tightest I have ever had to sit in, and there were no moveable armrests to give us any more space. There was a beverage and meal service shortly after takeoff and nothing more until an hour before landing. If you walked to the galley at the back of the plane, they would let you serve yourself beverage at room temp.

LynnMarie had the benefit of the bassinet seat. We were at a bulkhead just behind the wing exit door. They came over after we reached dcruising altitude and put a cargo net-like attachment on the wall and we placed the baby there. She slept a good bit of the 10+ hour flight, but she did spit up a bottle's worth of formula on herself and Mommy. Amy got to wear it the whole flight and the crew was clueless about helping when we asked for towels or napkins to clean up with. Later the baby peed through her diaper and her back-up outfit leaving her a fresh onesie as her only option for clothing.

Neither of us slept very much, it was too uncomfortable. Mainly we watched the time tick by and prayed for it to go quickly. The entertainment/video system was not working at my seat and Amy did not bother trying hers. The Continental flight was far superior to China Southern who we don't plan to ever use again.

LAX was not a bad experience, but it is big and busy and intimidating if you've never been. We got through immigration fairly easily and joyfully. The agents were congratulatory of our adoption and expedited our paperwork efficiently. We then went to baggae claim and found our bags without much difficulty, but here is where China Southern lost more points. We checked our stroller at the gate and when we landed they told us it would take a while to get it for us and to pick it up at baggage claim. There was no one from CSA in the baggage claim and I spent about 15 minutes wandering around looking for ANYONE who could help us.

We moved through customs without issue. We were asked it we were bringing eggs through the scanner. We were not. It was someone else's bag with kiwi fruit in it. BUSTED.

So out to the street level, chaos and crowds but we followed the signs and found the hotel shuttle area and got our bus to the LaQuinta, checking in around 8:45pm I think (the plane landed at 7pm). I got the girls upstairs and started on baths and showers and walked over to the McDonald's for our long-awaited taste of home.

We saw but never got to visit McD's in China and we know it would be "different." I got us staple items, double cheeseburgers, fries and diet cokes from the soda fountain with ICE! I can't say junk fod ever tasted so good! LynnMarie loved sampling Amy's cheeseburger and fries, so her first meal as an American citizen was McDonald's! Parents of the year? I guess not.

We are set to meet my cousin Hope tomorrow at noon and we'll have about 3 and a half hours with her before we have to be back at LAX for the final flight home to Atlanta. Now we are about to enjoy these big, soft beds and look forward to tomorrow being in our own beds. Let's pray LynnMarie sleeps well through the night as she is still on China time pretty much. Our 38 hour long Friday is almost done.

17 comments:

Janelle said...

our flight was uneventful and it was Continental and I STILL consider it my labor and birth experience. it's hard, and I'll never forget it! but it's DONE and you are almost home - praise God! looking forward to lots of posts and photos in the coming weeks. Have a healthy, happy, restful homecoming - it's glorious time of discovery and exploration for all of you!

The Straight's said...

thanks for the updates. won't be long now!

Michele S. said...

Our daughter's first taste of American food was McD's as well! :) When you get time, and have caught up on your sleep, please post to the AMCsupport group that you are home! I have been following your journey, and I know our AMC family would Love to hear that another child is home with their forever family!! :)

TimandKim said...

SOrry the plane ride was awful. But I guess you can think, it only gets better from here.
We enjoyed our stay in LA before coming home to Georgia. Best sleep we had and cold, ice drink.
I will agree that I do NOT like LAX. It is so chaotic and spread out.
Hope your flight to Atlanta is nice. It has been raining buckets here in Georgia. We are flying up to Atlanta today and will fly out of Atlanta about 3 pm for our trip to Vegas. So we will both be at ATL the same day!
Have a wonderful time at home!

Alyson and Ford said...

So happy to read your update. Those first plane flights with baby are never very good, but you all survived! It's over and you are here in the USA! We are so happy for you.

Alyzabeth's Mommy

Carrie said...

Thank you for sharing your journey with us! My flight to New wark from Beijing last year was just not so good at all. We end up missing our plane by 10 minutes. The plane wsa still boarding and they would not hold it for us. I was in tears and they said sorry. They gave us a hotel for the night the bus to pick us up never came. We end up staying the night in the air port.We got there at 8 pm there time and left 6 am there time. I was so sleeply! It was a Continental flight! We did have Mcd"s in China. Tasted good to me!

Mommy Spice said...

Ok, I'm just now getting all caught up. Wow!! What a little doll. Sorry about the flight. S.G. had a major diarrhea blow out while landing in L.A. We couldn't unbuckle and clean her up until we came to a complete stop. The people around us were gagging because it smelled so awful. I'm so excited for y'all!! Can't wait to see more pictures.

Sally- That Girl! said...

We didn't make parents of the year award either as our first stop in SFO was Burger King! I never even eat there but after two weeks eating Chinese food I was craving it!!!

Glad you guys are back home!

awaitingmissemily said...

Welcome home!!! Congrats on your new AMERICAN CITIZEN. Next couple of days will be rough, sleep when you can and know that it will get better. When you look back at the adjustment period you will think it was very short. Remember your bloggy friends and brothers and sisters in Christ are here for you.

Joan (Nana) said...

LynnMarie is almost HOME with her forever family..How great is that?

Fliss and Mike Adventures said...

Hope that all goes well back to Atlanta... things have been crazy of late... take care...

Don and Be said...

Last leg ........

RamblingMother said...

Welcome back to the US. Glad you are back and yes you are parents of the year. a little mcie d's rarely hurts anyone!

Dan and Liz said...

Almost HOME HOME HOME
CLICK CLICK CLICK
follow the yellow brick road
There is no place like home after you flew that many hours from China on China Southern Airline
Dan Zach Michelle and I just cacooned in for 5 days before we ventured past our front door. Congrats it is such a relief to touch down in the USA after your trip - We are so happy you are home. We won't see you until May as we are gone on Wed on next week. Have a wonderful first week together.
Liz Michelle Zach n Dan

Michelle said...

I am glad to see you are in the U.S. The first two weeks can be hard with getting used to the time change but it really does get better! Malia didn't sleep at all on our flight from Hong Kong to Minnesota so my experience was hard also. I guess it is just a part of the adoption roller coaster.

Amy said...

We were on United, and I had heard that the Chinese airlines were better. However, our experience was fine, so I guess I'll have to keep that in mind.

I did learn on our long flight back that three changes of clothes for the baby was not enough. We had three major diaper explosions on the way home and used every single one of her spare outfits. We were lucky we didn't need one more.

I hope you guys made it home OK! I can't wait to read about your home life together. :)

JenniferPeloquin said...

Welcome home, Christopher Family, Welcome home! :)