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The Adventure Begins!

Once we entered security at DFW and left our parents, reality hit.  My heart was pounding, and I began to really second guess a move this big.  We found our terminal and some seats, and Gracie and Ellie fell apart.  Their shoulders were shaking as silent tears ran down their cheeks…it broke my heart and everything inside my mama heart wanted to give them exactly what they were crying for.  We only had a short half hour wait before our flight was called, and they granted us priority boarding, so our first leg started off without any real problems.  The girls struggled a bit each carrying their overloaded backpacks and pulling a carry-on bag, but they managed without grumbling and gained lots of smiles and helps from already boarded patrons.  The plane definitely boosted the spirits of the girls and huge smiles were all around as the sounds of the engine overtook us.  They sat with eyes glued to the beautiful sight out of the tiny windows.  We landed in Los Angeles about 8:30 pm our time and had a quick dinner at the grand McDonalds (I am not a fan of the LA airport!).  We had to switch terminals and Ellie and I lost Cam and the older girls (she was struggling with her bags, so we had to figure that out).  I was near tears because my cell phone was out of commission and I had no idea where we were or where I was supposed to be.  Luckily, Cam was waiting around the corner and after I got slightly loud (but held in my tears), we were over it and a happy but tired family once again.  We made our way to the terminal we were supposed to be in, which in LA translates to a long, barren, concrete hallway with no seats and not a lot of lights.  The girls were dragging at this point as it was nearing midnight our time.  We were starting to get stares with our pale skin and our little kids loaded down, but they were kind stares (I hope!).  We made our way to the very back of the top floor of our double decker air bus and settled in for a very long 14 hours.  About 90 minutes into the flight, we were offered a meal of rice and…something that resembled chicken in a thick gooey brown sauce, served in a little plastic tray covered in gold foil.  The smell was overwhelming, but the rice was sticky and good!  Gracie was awake still checking out the movies, and the littles were trying to get comfortable as they slept.  We ended up lifting all the arm rests on our row (we had all four seats and Cam was in the row in front of us) and unbuckling our seat beats so everyone could stretch out on top of each other.  This worked well for a few hours until Faith and Ellie woke up (at the same time) crying because their legs were hurting.  Gracie moved up, Cam moved back, and we each took a child into our laps and rocked and massaged until they fell back to sleep.  Only 9 more hours…
The rest of the flight was uneventful thankfully, and we finally arrived in Guangzhou.  It was 6 am, and we had until 7:20 (when boarding started) to get all of our luggage (15 large bags/containers plus or carry-ons and backpacks), get through customs and go back through security to recheck our bags.  It didn’t happen.  We started to get our luggage and load them onto the small carts, and we had one bag to go when the luggage wheel shut off.  We quickly noticed that the escalators were not running, so we decided to wait until they came back on instead of assuming our bag was lost.  A few moments later, it did start moving again and our bag popped out!  We loaded it onto the last cart (FIVE carts!) and each of us took a cart to push.  The girls couldn’t see over the luggage, so they were blindly pushing and we were trying to guide them through the maze of the airport as best we could.  We got to the recheck station (customs was easy breezy), and learned that we were too late to make our flight.  They started to check other flights and found us seats on a plane that left at noon.  We had five hours to kill, so we found a row of seats in our terminal and settled in.  We couldn’t nap as it would really mess up our bodies more than they already were, so we tried to explore.  One of us had to stay with our carry-ons, and I quickly volunteered.  I was trying to function on about 3 hours of very interrupted upright sleeping and was a bit grumpy.  Ha!  I read a book while they looked around, then we put a movie on the laptop for them to watch to kill some more time.  We got some noodles for lunch and had a picnic on the floor that I am sure was super clean…but the noodles were good!  We boarded our flight and stuffed ourselves into tiny seats for the next 3 hours.  I promptly fell asleep (oops!) as did Ellie, and we didn’t wake up until we were landing. We got all our bags (woohoo!!), met our friends, and headed to our new home where we were met with a beautiful surprise.

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3 thoughts on “The Adventure Begins!

  1. Now THAT'S the kind of detail I was looking for from Cameron and the girls! I knew I could count on you for a good recap. Excited to hear more and see pictures.Love you guys.

    Like

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