As some of you have heard, I had quite an adventure getting home. Seems like I can't go anywhere without it being some sort of ordeal. Below is an outline of the adventure in getting home...
Friday December 18th
5:00 pm leave VOH for airport
7:15 pm took Emmanuel & Isaac to eat at Papaye's for dinner
8:30 pm arrive at airpot in Accra
8:35 pm find out my flight is delayed from 11:45 pm till 8:00 am the following morning (all the while realizing my Ghana cell phone had been left at the village and the driver was already gone)
9:00 pm-11:50 pm stood in line to try and re-book my connecting flights I would now miss with no luck. Even with the Sweedish business man behind me trying to bribe an airline worker for me, and the Dutch doctor in front of me looking up flights on his computer from the British air flight system. The agent ended up telling me to try my luck in London because she couldn't do anything for me unless I wanted a flight on Tuesday. She said there was nothing to ANY american city for days.
12:00 am checked my bags in
Saturday December 19th
1:00-1:30 am visited the internet cafe in the airport (i had nothing else to do!)
1:30-5:30 am attemped sleep on some benches in the airport
6:30 am customs, security & check in
7:00 am I was invited into the British air club lounge by the Dutch doctor. It was so nice! I got coffee, an apple, and plaintian chips for breakfast.
7:30 am board the plane
8:00 am plane took off for London
8:30 am realized my tv screen didn't work. Thankfully about an hour later the flight attendent reseated me, so I was able to watch movies the rest of the flight
2:50 pm landed in London Heathrow airport
3:00 pm-7:00 pm the line. This was the line in which I waited to be re-booked on another flight. London had weather issues as well as the whole northeast part of the states, so there were MANY people who were in need of rebooking. Thankfully I found some best friends for the day in line. Matt, Colleen, and Jessica were all in the same perdicament as I. Thankfully British Air was so nice and was bringing boxes of bottled water, chips, cookies, and occasionally sandwhiches to all of us camped out in line.
7:00-8:00 pm rebooking. My first impression of my rebooking agent was that he was a grumpy cynic who was not excited to help me out. Turns out he was God's gift to traveling. After pulling strings and working miracles, he was able to get me on a flight for the next day to Seattle. My original ticket on B.A. was only to Washington D.C. where I was going to switch to southwest airlines to make it the rest of the way to Portland. When he asked where I was staying and I said I had no place I asked if he could just put me in the same hotel as everyone else, and he said "No, they are crappy." Ha ha. He then proceeded to find me the best one on the list to stay in. Matt, Colleen, and Jessica had gone to agents before me, and were waiting to see that I got on a flight. THey came over to see what was going on with my flight. And my agent ended up fixing Colleen and Jessica's flight as they had only been given standby tickets and no confirmed seats. He even let me call mom on the phone to let her know I had gotten a flight. The four of us walked away from the man singing his praises, SOO thankful that he had done everything in his power to take care of us. Even though it was weather delays, and not their fault British Air was so accomodating! They even gave us hotel packs with toliteries and a t-shirt to sleep in!
8:30 pm shuttle to hotel
9:00 pm arrival and check in at a beautiful Holiday Inn in London
9:05 pm took the best shower I have had in 4.5 months. I felt SO clean!
9:20 pm drank british tea, and layed in the HUGE bed and fell asleep to the end of "Love Actually"
Sunday December 20th
8:30 am woke up and ate breakfast with Colleen downstairs. It was a bit overwhelming to have so many choices of food. I haven't had that in months!
10:30 packed up and left hotel
11:30 am arrival and check-in at airport
2:20 pm flight took off for Seattle
4:oo pm (Seattle time) arrived in Seattle! (for those of you good at time zones, it was about a 10 hour flight)
4:10 pm baggage collection & customs. I found out one of my bags didn't make it from London.
4:30 pm found my wonderful family waiting with hugs and all sorts of yummy food!
4:45-9:00 pm driving home to Portland & stopping to eat MEXICAN food on the way!
I am so thankful to be home! I was blessed to have travel companions, and VERY helpful B.A. employees. I have been VERY cold today! But it feels great to not be in the 90+ degree weather! I look forward to seeing/talking to many of you while I am home! Merry Christmas to you all! I hope you all are home for Christmas.