The open road- I mean sky!

My friend's son' Flat Jesus and I ready to go.
My friend’s son’s Flat Jesus and I ready to go.

It has been a while since I’ve updated my blog. I was more busy than I expected I’d be once I left San Antonio and half the time, I figure nobody reads my posts anyway. Additionally, I’ve posted quite a bit on FB and I think the only people who read this are my friends from Facebook!

Anyway, here’s a brief update. I left San Antonio 5 weeks ago after packing up my house, putting what few belongings I have left into storage, and saying goodbye to friends and Basil. It took me 9 days to make it to my family in Massachusetts and New Hampshire. I made a lot of stops along the way and got to see some peeps I hadn’t seen in a long time. A part of me dreaded the long journey, but looking back, it was kind of fun!

I spent 4 weeks in New England and kept myself plenty busy. As soon as I got home, I got a gym membership because I knew I needed a schedule of some sort. I spent most mornings at Planet Fitness and my days were filled with friends, family, and various excursions. I had to take a few trips to see some of my favorite places, like the New England Aquarium, Quincy Marketplace, and Fenway Park in Boston. I spent some time hiking in the mountains and even went to Niagara Falls, Canada, and Watkins Glen, New York.

I packed and repacked my bag. I constantly reevaluated the items I planned on bringing and I was eager to head out on my adventure as the time neared. People have been so fascinated by my plans and sometimes it’s just interesting to watch peoples’ reactions when I tell them I quit my job, sold my home, and bought a one way ticket to Asia. I wonder how many people actually do that…

I planned on bringing my Kelty pack as a carry on. I took it to Portland in April for a trial run and it fit in the overhead bin. I got everything packed into it like a meticulously layered lasagna and took a small back pack to easily separate my toiletries, some snacks, and to have easy access to my iPad and other in flight necessities. When I got to the airport, however, United had other plans for my pack. They said it was too big (I even tried to sneak past one of the ticket checkers), but I was caught red handed by a grumpy old lady who yelled at me. I reorganized a bit and made my way through security after checking my backpack. I fear losing it as it’s all I have left, all my belongings for an indefinite period of time!

I’m flying on a 747, but much to my dismay, we do not have individual seat back TVs or phone chargers, so I can’t catch up on random movies for 12 hours. I made sure to only get a few hours of sleep last night in hopes of getting some on the way, but I never sleep, so I likely won’t today, either. I employed the same tactic when I went to Korea and my plan backfired. I was jet lagged and sleep deprived for days when I got there.

Our flight was delayed 50 minutes. It’s not a big deal, but it seems like a lot when you still have 13 hours ahead of you. The United app would not download onto my iPad (but it’s on my phone), and without it, I would not be able to use it for the free “Personal Device Entertainment.” Shortly after we took off, the captain informed us they had to restart the computer system so the TVs in the cabin were shut down. Just moments after, an alarm of some sort went off. Different airline personnel were walking about the cabin, but it didn’t stop. I thought maybe I was going crazy and just hearing things because it didn’t seem anybody was doing anything about it. Finally, I asked a flight attendant and she said it was a smoke detector. She said it was driving her nuts. Phew, I’m not hearing things! We then hit a patch of turbulence. I don’t get scared on planes (I even jumped out of one a few weeks ago), but this was rough. I braced myself and the man next to me, whose breath I can smell from my seat, spilled his coffee. Within a few minutes, the turbulence subsided then the alarm stopped beeping. Shortly after, the movie came back on, from the beginning, “My Big, Fat, Greek Wedding, Part Two.” Dinner (late lunch?) is served. It’s 4:00 pm. 11 more hours to go.

Jumpin out of a plane is exhilarating, turbulence and smoke alarms are not!
Jumpin out of a plane is exhilarating, turbulence and smoke alarms are not!

As suspected, I cannot sleep. We are over eastern Russia now and we flew north of Alaska. I think that may have been the northernmost point I’ve seen yet! Dinner was mundane at best and mostly full of carbs. My keen eye for portion sizes had me guesstimating we got approximately 3 ounces of chicken at mealtime and barely any vegetables. Needless to say, I was hungry 2 hours later. Thank goodness for Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Quest Bars. I have 12 more, I’ll ration them out accordingly over the next few weeks.

Five and a half more hours. I should stop, at this point, I’ll just continue to ramble, out of boredom and eventual exhaustion!