blue moon (2)

Monday, January 02, 2006

How The Journey Began ©

This is a long post but it will be awhile before I put another one up.
The next week or so will be spent sight seeing and reading your blogs.

My trip to New Zealand and Lisa started Boxing Day.
I was talking to Lisa on the head set and at 4:40 am I told her I was strapping on my boots and getting ready to call a taxi.
This was it.
After over a year of talking about me going, the day had come. Once again we would be sharing the same space and getting used to being together.I was leaving my cats and parents in the hands of my dysfunctional brother.
This was my first trip anywhere as an adult and the first time I was leaving my parents for a long period of time.
This was not easy for me either.
I had worries of what would happen in my absence.
I very rarely worry about myself.
I never have.
Growing up as I did as a kid I always considered myself expendable and lived life to its fullest without a care in the world. It wasn’t until I became a parent that my mortality ever crossed my mind.
So here I was December 26 2005, leaving for an adventure to someplace I had never been before, not knowing how I would be received by most people.
Blind to any worries I may have or should have.

I said goodbye, I love you to Lisa, shut down the computer and my lifeline to her and stood up and waited for the taxi.
The freezing rain was coming down with a fury in the dark morning.
Emme and Frick were huddled at my feet.
I pick them both up and held them, softly telling them that I will miss them both.
I could sense they knew something was up.
The suitcase was a definite give away.
The door bell rang and my ride was here.
I carried my bags to the cab and when I went back to the door they were both standing there with their faces stuck to the window.
I went in and petted them one more time and locked the door.
As I walked around the side of the taxi I looked up at my mother’s house and I could see my mother standing at her second floor window crying and watching me leave.

After my hell ride to the airport I settled in for my long journey.
The wait at the Ottawa airport was 2 ½ hours long and boring.
I sat there watching all alone as people slowly started drifting in to take the flight to Vancouver.
It was a full flight and the seats were small and uncomfortable.
I sat there looking out the window, anxious to be where I wanted to be, where I needed to be.
After 5 ½ hours I was in Vancouver and went and checked in to prepare for my next leg of my trip.
I was told I had to go through U.S. customs there and this made me nervous.
Even though I have not been in trouble for 20 years, I still have not asked for a pardon either and this was why I tried to fly around the States. With all the bull shit they have been in their security is high.
I had to go through 4 check points before I got to stand in a line for and hour along with thousands of other people.
Was I worried?
Fucken right I was.
Was I sweating from the heat and the situation?
Like Niagra Falls.
I filled in my declaration card and handed it to the customs person.
I explained I had a couple of sandwiches in my bag to eat at the air port and that was all.
Then I had to get my suit case which was taken and checked and then go to the other customs section to check my carry on.
They made me almost strip before I was allowed to go through the metal detector and when I did the fucken thing went off like I had just won the show case show down.
I looked at the man with the wand and told him it was probably my chains and showed them to him and he waved me by without even passing the wand over me.
So much for security I guess.
He should have passed the wand over me. I could have been a nut rather than the basket case that I was.
After all of that, I had to wait another 6 hours to board a plane to Hawaii.
A loooooong 6 hours.
The first thing I did was to find where the gate I was leaving from was so that I wouldn’t have to run around looking for it when the time to leave came.
The second thing was to find a pack of matches to light a cigarette because my lighter had been confiscated at customs.
The third thing was finding someplace to have a smoke.
The next thing to happen that made my stay in Vancouver much more relaxing was Lisa calling me on my cell phone.
This settle4d me down a lot.
It made my wait a lot better hearing her voice, even if it was but for a short time.
I managed to hook up with an older couple that were on their way home to Hawaii.
They had been visiting their son in Portland and were now eager to get home.
I sat there talking to them and before I knew it we were friends and I was getting their whole life story from how the met while he was married to someone else and left that wife to marry this one whom he had 3 kids with.
How that for breaking the ice people?
They could see that I was tired.
I had been up since 8 am Christmas and it was now 6 pm the next day.
They told me to nod off and they would watch my back pack but I thanked them and declined.
Instead they passed out on the benches and I watched their stuff LOL
They did eventually wake up and they looked after my gear so I could go to the washroom and buy some more water.
I must have drunk 10 litres of water on the trip.
They asked me how long I was in Hawaii for and that I was invited to stop by but I told them I was just there as a transfer point and that was all.
A bunch of other older people came and sat with us and I joked around with them for some laughs and we had a great time.
The plane finally was ready and we boarded for Hawaii.
I ended up sitting in business class in the only seats that had not been replaced by the new nicer comfortable ones.
There was a family from Thunder Bay who sat next to me who were actually from England but working in Canada and were going to New Zealand on a holiday.
The mother and daughter sat next to me and the father with the son were in the 2 aisle seats.
The flight to Hawaii was the flight from hell from the take off.
Four hours of wicked turbulence.
The kids were sick and throwing up as were many of the other passengers. I ended up going to get more sick bags in the washroom and passing them around.
Getting to Hawaii was a relief.
That took 6 hours to get there.
I walked out of the plane and out of the airport and into the middle of the street and took a deep breath of fresh unrecycled air.
I smoked 3 cigarettes and relaxed.
I sent Lisa a text message that I was 2 stops away and walked back in for an 11 hour flight to Australia.
This was a long flight.
Very little turbulence but I do believe I was hallucinating at some stages from lack of sleep.
The mother who was sitting next to me passed out and was using me as a pillow half way over the Pacific.
I just let her be and read my book.
She had quite the time with both her kids being sick as her husband did so who am I to deny her some rest.
Upon landing in Sydney I went to get my last boarding pass for New Zealand and the last leg of the trip.
I picked up a couple of post cards a stuffed Kangaroo for my niece and a baseball cap for my collection.
The family from the plane spotted me and ran over like they bumped into their long lost uncle and started telling me how happy they were to find me there.
The fact that we were together just 30 minutes earlier must have passed them by LOL
They were on their way to Auckland and the start of their adventure in New Zealand.
The kids were sad that I wasn’t going to be there to and I must admit I had grown fond of them too.
They left the airport first and we said good bye, then they were gone and I was once again alone in a strange world.
I found an internet terminal and I sent Lisa a message through her comments so she would know I was almost there and excited to be on my way.
The Plane to NZ loaded.
Last leg of this trip and 3 hours to go.
I couldn’t wait to see Lisa’s face at the air port.
The people on the plane were excellent.
They were funny and accommodating.
The food was great and they had free booze.
I opted to skip the booze and just have a light lunch with a coke.
I had a mother ask me if her young daughter could sit with me and watch the movie because she could see it from her seat.
They were from Scotland on their way here for holidays.
We had to stuff 4 blankets under her to get her high enough to see.
We landed in Wellington airport and the customs people were fast and funny.
We joked about the 10 pound bag of caramel popcorn in my back pack and they put my stuff through the x-ray machine again.
I told them that if any kernels hadn’t popped when I bought them that they surely were popped by now because of all the x-ray machines that they had put my bag through during this trip.

I got my bags, walked into the airport and there off to the right a voice said my name.
There she was coming towards me smiling.


No comments: