From Sempronius to NYC by Shortline Bus ... the journey began with Brother in law Paul taking us and our suitcases to Ithaca. It was the beginning of a three week adventure full of anticipation and excitement and also some consternation... leaving the animals.... the vegetable garden which was in full summer production and a lot of hard work to get to that stage. Not to mention concerns about the trip itself....a long time to spend flying with Drew and Jye.... and of course the pull of the heart strings....to see my girls and my unmet grandson Hunter Jack and of course my parents and friends in Western Australia. Patrick of course would be meeting everyone for the very first time.... and seeing my place of origin. It was important to me on so many levels that it was almost hard to not want it to be perfect. Like anything planned there were the usual hiccups with timing but really we were incredibly lucky with transport and accomodation.
We spent 5 hours by bus travelling to NYC. It was something i really wanted to do with the boys and they were very interested in seeing as much as they could. It was really a good start to the trip as it provided us with an opportunity to catch our breath so to speak before the long haul to Melbourne Victoria.
One of the things we did was take the boys to ground zero in Manhatten. It is still a terrible mess of construction and there were plenty of places to see the tale of that awful event. It was something to behold. Tragic and a scar on the cityscape.
We met our lovely friend Joan in NYC and went exploring. It was great fun. We covered a fair bit of ground and took the boys to Top of the Rock..... Battery Park..... Toys R Us to see some gigantic lego models.... loads of things kids like to do. The hotel was small but functional... Holiday Inn ... barely room to move between the two double beds which was unfortunate as it really cramped our stay.
We stayed for two days and nights and headed off early in the morning with all the luggage and sundry bags to JFK by maxi taxi.... Took about an hour in traffic and we didn't leave until near midnight.....so we had a lengthy wait at the airport.... but it was the only real solution other than trying to drag two bags apiece anywhere we went.... not going to happen.
So the first leg of the Journey by Jet was from JFK to Los Angeles..... it was quite a warm day and it took about 4 hours to get there.....internal flight so not a huge issue with customs or security but still the usual lines everywhere.
Then the dreaded cross ocean leg of the journey.... there is no escaping it.....LA to Sydney is a nightmare 14 hours....then of course you have to go through customs. It was appalling a wait...and in fact were meant to catch a connecting flight to Melbourne which we missed because of how long it took to get through the system. Luckily we were flying qantas and they sorted out another fllight an hour later....... but still i knew that meant the girls would be waiting for us and not know that we were coming in an hour later...... I knew they would have Hunter at the airport and could just imagine trying to keep a 15 month old entertained for any length of time.
But really it turned out fine.
It was a very emotional almost surreal meeting......the familiar voices of my girls was a balm to my heart. The cuddles were the best. It was like one of those times you thought you needed to pinch yourself to see if you were not dreaming. I could not believe how much it affected me. I guess i missed them pretty terribly.