The first 10 hour flight to Amsterdam was a breeze. We all managed to stay entertained, though I shudder at the thought of the snacks, movie and computer game time our Devi was soaking up. At times like these, we choose to overlook the normal rules and employ our traveling motto...when the kids are happy we are happy. Thankfully it works every time. Until...you get stuck on the tarmac in Amsterdam with no one to tow your plane those last 100 feet to the terminal. In minutes the cabin got hot and stuffy, truly uncomfortable. Those minutes turned into over an hour when, sadly our Pumpkin Pie unexpectedly lost her cookies...and gummy bears...and lunch...and dinner.
All I can say is I failed as a mother. Totally unprepared....no wipes, no extra set of clothes, no "collection" bag to be found in our seat pocket. In defense, we've traveled extensively with Dev and never before has she had any issues. So in an effort to travel light, I used the valuable carry on space for other important items like games, and snacks. Thank goodness the people seated around us came to our rescue.
Thankful for a lengthy layover, I now am intimate with the Amsterdam airport shops and I can say with certainty that there are no shops that sell clothing in anything other than adult sizes...except one. Ralph Lauren! Yes, Devi is now sporting a pair of leggings that were more expensive than the bulk of her closet COMBINED (and a souvenir Holland t-shirt) Desperate times call for desperate measures.
Flight KLM 847 was uneventful as we all slept almost the entire way, awaking to a dinner plate of our first Indian food of the trip. Even 30,000 feet up, it was delicious. Touching down on Indian soil, Devi asked "Where are the elephants?" and "Can we go outside and look around a while?" Her first impression was one of disappointment, as the airport seems to look so much like the one back home. We'll see what she thinks as time goes on.
Now we are awaiting our next flight to Bangalore. We are oddly dressed, smell a little funky, but are almost there! Devi is a trooper, happily laying on our suitcases as there are no seats available in the terminal where we are waiting through the night. Since 2007, security is noticeably heightened with guards carrying AK-47s at waist height and where even purchasing a bottled water requires showing one's boarding pass. The man at the customs was all business until he saw Devi's passport. Realizing she was adopted, a wide grin spread across his face and he nodded and said "Bless You!"
Now a little later, I am watching my two sleeping beauties snoozing away in the middle of the afternoon. We made it the last two flights without fanfare and arrived in Mysore to find palm trees and warm weather. A nice change to Delhi, which was in the 40s. No elephants yet, but tonight we are headed out with Adhur, the driver we met this afternoon for a quick snack and to view the Mysore Palace light show. It will be an early evening for us, as we are bushed and are promptly being picked up - per our gentleman's agreement - to head to the Elephant Cooridor (a home stay) tomorrow morning and will remain there for the next 4 days.
Our Devi has been a champ. She is such the good traveler and we are so incredibly proud of her. I must add here that people do a double take where ever we happen to be. They see her, hard to miss when she is flitting about, then they look to the parents following her and THEN we see the furrowed brow as they attempt to make sense of it. Conspicuous! Oh yes.
Currently, I am experiencing technical difficulty trying to post pictures. If anyone knows of a way to get pictures from Itunes to blogger via an Ipad please comment. I will close with that and unfortualety no photos yet. It is hard to look at the beautiful children here and not imagine the size and shape of our Treya. Those truths are coming!
Please know we are safe and holding up well.