Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Getting There...

Yes No-Blog-Rachel...here it is...first of several...after all, I was there two weeks...

As all you regulars know, I left Friday, February 1st on my first ever, on my own, trip across The Pond. I'd traveled internationally before, lots of times. Never alone though...and it had been about 15 or so years since my last trip. And almost 14 years since I've had a vacation that wasn't with family (hmmm....strangely the same number of years Spencer has been around...)

Anyway, Feb 1st started out early. My airport ride showed up in the wee hours of the morning. They needed to drop me off and then make it to work early that day. I, of course, was all ready having calmly finished my packing the night before. Hah. Don't you just love fiction? The ready part was true...the calm? Not so much.

Upon arriving at the airport, the lovely, helpful lady at the check-in counter informs me that since I'm so early, they can put me on the earlier flight out to Chicago - which had been delayed, but was now scheduled to take off in about 45 min. Yay! I was excited about that. It would give me an extra 45min in Chicago to get to my flight to England.

We shall hurriedly mention the "BAG SEARCH!!!" "BAG SEARCH!!!" incident in security. Not very exciting and no needles were confiscated. They apparently didn't like the fact that I had a digital camera. Go figure.

On board I go...squeezed into the window seat next to a very large man with a cold. No, fellow knitters...there was no knitting on this flight...

Halfway thru the flight, I looked out and saw this...

Somewhere over the Midwest....all flat and covered in feet of snow...

Sock Monkey decided to come out from the backpack and take a look...my seat mate's snoring woke him up...

Yes, my friends, Sock Monkey is back and couldn't resist going on a new adventure...especially since he's never been in a plane before...

And we had another friend join along...Ms. Cow - she had some visiting to do as well.*

She was a little intimidated by the whole noisy plane thing, so stayed in the seat pocket. Sock Monkey tried to get her to look out the window, but she refused.

A few hours later...Welcome to Chicago Ladies and Gentlemen!

A cold and snowy day greeted us. The plows were working hard to clear off the runways. I was really hoping my connecting flight was still going to leave on time....

Check out the snow melting truck/machine thing! Coolest. Thing. Ever!!!!

With 45 minutes added to the 45 minutes I had to waste in the Chicago Airport, and being way too nervous to do anything but walk about, I, of course took pictures of the toilet.

Coolest. Toilet. Ever! Press a button on the wall, and a new toilet seat cover comes out and around the seat...whirrrrrr...now I'm really wishing I'd taken video...

No pictures from the flight over unfortunately (which left right on time, by the way). I was in and out of consciousness on it and trying to get in a little knitting in-between. I had finally started the second of my fingerless mitts about 30 minutes before we'd boarded the flight in Chicago, and had gotten more than half way through it by the time we landed. Knitting on a plane! YES! Had many friendly conversations with other passengers about it during the flight, the technique I was using (two circulars instead of dp's), and the stitch pattern (Anne the pattern writer calls it Pave). I apparently messed up somewhere around where the thumb gusset increases started. Several days later while in the car traveling to somewhere with The Honey, I noticed my mistake. Gah!

We arrived Feb 2nd, at 6:15am - ish...on a cold and snowy morning in England. We were an hour early (!!!!!!) and with all of us from the flight making frantic phone calls to our rides saying we were early. I sent a text to The Honey while in line at Immigration saying we were early and I was heading thru to the luggage carousel already. He replied that he was still 30 minutes away. Had expected as much since I didn't find out we were going to be that early until we were about halfway thru the flight - so I couldn't tell him.... and he wouldn't have found out until he woke up and checked the airport website.

After making my way thru all the official hoo hah, 15 min later, The Honey arrived and we set out.

DAY-YUM IT WAS COLD!!!!! I knew it would be cold and tried to prepare myself for it, but there is just no way to do that if you're not used to it. Took a while for the shivers to go away. Yes, I was bundled up, but it was definitely a shock to the system.

Luckily, The Honey's car has a fully functioning heater.

After a snowy drive home and several incidents of The Honey talking to himself as I passed in and out of consciousness...we arrived at his house.

Here's a view from the window on the second floor at the top of the stairs...

First thing I thought was...Good Heavens, I'm in a PBS show!!!! Looked just like the houses you see in the British shows they have. LOVE IT!

Honey thought I was crazy...and then bundled me off to take a nap before I passed out cold.

In case you haven't gotten it, I don't travel well. Also didn't help that I hadn't been able to sleep for those last few days before I left...

Coming soon...Off to Wales!!!! Castles!!!! Foreign toilets!!!!!! Bridges!!!!! Visiting with The Honey's Family!!!!!!! And Stairs...Lots of Bloody Stairs!!!!!!!

Whuh....a little unstable never hurt anyone...

* Ms. Cow has a bit of a relationship with Cow, who just happens to hang out with The Honey in his Home Office. Ms. Cow hangs out in my home office. They met for the first time when Honey came to visit, and have been an 'item' ever since. Ahhh....Bovine Romance....how sweet.


  1. Anonymous2:38 PM PDT

    It's the first floor, sweetheart. We have the ground floor at, erm, ground level; then the first floor, second floor, etc.....


    PS Hy-un-dai :)

  2. awww!! The honey!! Hey Donna, can't wait to hear more. I left a comment on my blog about yours.

    Love the sock monkey! cracking me up about the Bovine Romance. an international one at that! Fancy!! Hate flying too. And I'm only bitching about going to Hawaii. Can't muster up enough courage to go international!

  3. Phew! Thanks. I feel better. :)

  4. Anonymous2:31 PM PDT

    Did you wave at Pittsburgh as you flew over me?

    I often wonder what it would be like to live in a PBS show..... then I recall that most of the PBS shows are about murders, and that's usually where the wondering stops.

    I am a nervous flyer... I can't sleep at all on planes for pretty much the same reasons I can't sleep on a bus.