I am well on my way to Ukraine. I didn't sleep much, I guess I was just thinking of everything I had to do to be completely ready to go. If it is not done by now...forget it...it won't get done at all.
Got to the airport and changed things in the bags around. Big Red held exactly 50 lbs, the black rolling back held exactly 50 lbs. I bought two gray "foot lockers" (plastic variety) and stuffed them full. (one 46 one 48 lbs) They will be left behind in Ukraine and used as needed.
The WEEM ladies suggested I do that so that they would be able to have storage over here and I would not have to pay to get them back home empty. Great idea.
After only 3 hours sleep...every thing gets a little fuzzy around the edges. I manage to get thru securtiy with no pat down this year, I am eternally grateful for that, and I wait at the gate with some junk food breakfast.
D.C. is D.C. but their airport is much better than it used to be. I didn't have to use the dreaded people mover with surly driver intact. Much better system to have a tram take us to the needed gate area. A much smoother and easier exchange...thanks D.C. You got this one right!
Had to check my carry on at the Austrian Air gate, apparantly they think it is too big. I saw many other people with various and assorted carry ons that were bigger...but it is not worth the argument. I take what I need out of it and send it on its way.
Flight uneventful, watched movies, didn't sleep, not much worth eating...typical airline fare...oh well. Got to Vienna on time and in fact had a little time left over.
I knew I should not have slept at the gate. I almost missed the flight because I didn't hear the boarding call. Then in a panicked state, couldn't immediately find my passport! Oh well...all is well...found the passport..got on the plane and made it to Dniper!
The customs guy helped me, for the very first time, with my bags. He loaded them on the conveyor belt to be x-rayed. Of course I was the last to go thru because it took me so long to manhandle 4 lg bags and a carry on plus my backpack. But we got through and waited to be approved.
After several minutes of struggling with the limited language exchange between us I finally made them understand I had an interpreter waiting on the other side of the sliding doors to freedom!
Having Rita there made a huge difference. She listened patiently as he told her I should buy all of the stuff I brought in from the Stated from Ukrainians. And next year not to bring the stuff in with me. Uhhh...not! There is absolutely NO way to get the handmade things I brought in over here!! Oh well...next year we will see!
I have to go, but I will tell you the story of the water next blog!