I arrived in the States yesterday afternoon after a long 25 hours of travel. We left our apartment at 6:15 in the morning on Monday morning, and arrived 25 hours later at my in-laws' house in California. That is one loooooong trip.
We were able to work things out to get our tickets from our frequent flyer miles, so that was a huge bonus for us. But being free tickets, our seats were the very farthest in the back of the plane. Literally, we were the last two seats next to the bathrooms. That may sound crummy, but my son loved those seats. We both loved that we didn't have a third seat next to us where a stranger would sit. My son had his favorite window seat and I had my favorite aisle seat. The only really bad thing about being by the bathrooms was that sometimes people would open the door before flushing the toilets and so the loud flushing noise would wake us up. We had personal movie players at each seat, so we were set! The really only complaint I had about the flight was the food....bleck. Oh, and we did have quite a bit of turbulence, but it was just a constant rocking instead of really bad turbulence. Another good thing about the flight was that they kept the air conditioner at a good temperature. Usually the Chinese are more cold blooded than most Americans, and they crank up the heater even in warm temperatures. But this flight was nice and cool.
So when we got to the San Francisco airport, we trudged our way through customs and then made our way over to the rental car building. My husband had reserved a rental car for me online. I think the company must have thought I was only going to use the car online, because when I got to the desk, they had about 10 people standing in line in front of me. I stood in line for an hour, and then a woman ahead of me in line told me that they were out of cars, and that was why the line wasn't moving. I asked, "What about if you have reserved a car online?" She said, "Even those people who reserved a car can't get one." At that point, and since the line wasn't moving, and since I'd already been waiting an hour, I bailed and decided to take BART.
Imagine if you will my son and I each pulling two 50 pound wheely suitcases with a small carry-on suitcase piled on top of one. Imagine us each trying to pull these suitcases on to the BART train. No so bad. The ride to our city was smooth, and our suitcases didn't seem too much in the way. But after we arrived at our city stop, we had to quickly pull all of the suitcases off the train. Then we had to pull them quite a ways to the elevator, then after getting out of the elevator we had to pull them through the gate. We got permission to take them through a side gate. Then we had to pull them to another elevator, and then all the way to the parking lot. It's one day later, and I'm still tired..... But it was nice that my father in law was able to pick us up from BART. Take THAT, crummy rental car agency!
That was one long flight. Actually, it's been a long two years. It's good to be home. Here's a pic from the airplane. I actually dropped my Ipad trying to take this. But here it is in case you ever wanted to see China from above. :)