24.06.2016 - 25.06.2016
Note: This Day was like weird I don’t even know how many hours it was because I went through so many different time changes…I’m going to call it 1 day but it will be written in parts so that I can remember it all!
I slept through the night for the first time in what feels like forever! It was relieving! I definitely felt that I needed to go to school today. I got up and got ready. I am still sick, but I can now say with certainty I am on my way to recovery (the antibiotic is working!). In class this morning Leo taught again and we literally talked about churros for the first hour lol. (Like vocab and practice all surrounding churros.) Then as a surprise we all walked to a churro shop and were given chocolate churros! Now…given that I could eat barley anything for the past few days I didn’t think this was such a good idea for me to eat. I did take 2 small bites though and it was delicious! (I felt the negative effects not long after, haha but worth it!) And I am certain Carl was not too put out have to finish the rest of mine.
After churros we walked back to the school and gave our presentations. Haha…so an hour and a half of stress and then boredom lol. I was not a fan of them making us do that project. I did not learn much at all from it and it felt like time could have been more productively spent. Oh well. After class I said goodbye to everyone.
Which was kind of sad, but also I am so excited to be coming home!!! I got back to the house, did last minute packing, tried to swallow a few bites of lunch and then poured my thanks out to my host mother! I could not have asked for anyone more wonderful than her! I got so lucky and will always be grateful for the love she showed me. Juano got home with two bottles of wine for me to take to my parents (awwww sooo cute!) But uh….Haha remember how full my suitcase already was? I fit them though…I really hope they don’t break in there! Juano and Jimena drove me to the bus station helped me load my luggage, and stayed with me until I got onto the bus. I’m going to really miss them!!! Once on the bus it was a two hour drive…I slept some but not much because I could not get comfortable. Once at the bus station in Madrid I went and got another one of my bubble drinks! It was delicious and very soothing on my throat (like the ice cream but without the cream that destroys my stomach.) I took that with me to the metro. I bought my metro ticket like a pro this time haha. I knew exactly what line to get off on and where to switch lines. It’s amazing how much knowing the language and having experience helps! Once at the airport I made my way to check my bag and then to the gate. I didn’t get to see much of the airport last time. This time I was in terminal 1 and just that was humongous!
I must have walked like 20 minutes to get to my gate. We were supposed to board our flight at 8:50, but didn’t until 9:30. And then once on the plane we didn’t leave until 11:00…Not good since I needed to make a shuttle to the hotel that I was already going to be close to making. I felt sinus pressure for sure, but it wasn’t excruciating so that was welcomed!
Continued: So after writing that the pain was not excruciating, we started to go down…and it quickly became very uncomfortable. My ears would not pop the pressure was painful and I could barely hear anything. Once the plane landed and I got off this did not change. Also, my flight at that point was more than an hour off schedule. I WAY missed the shuttle and at that point decided even trying to get to the hotel was silly. I’d only sleep for like 2 hours and then have to come back to the airport…so my parents helped me cancel the reservation and I just spent the night in the airport. Freshened up in this bathroom and sleep here for a bit.
I slept for about 30 minutes haha then decided to just forget that and get coffee. I had two bags to check and so I just went downstairs and got into the front of the United Line to be one of the first to check their bags. I sat there for about two hours on the floor until they finally started taking bags. To my fun surprise when I got to the counter I was told 2 bags checked would cost me $100! What? I had been told the whole time that you got 2 for free…uggg so consolidation time again… I stepped to the side and stuffed the two bags together. Then this grouchy guy came by and told me “Mam, you need to repack in the repacking zone, this is the check in zone.” (I was literally in nobody’s way…) We had a silent grouch stare battle and I won he let me stay where I was…lol what did he expect? For me to take 6 trips to get my luggage over to the other side of the terminal when it was already open? Haha at this point I was not in a good mood…felt sick, exhausted, waited in lines for hours…my grouch level trumped his lol. After battling with my suitcase to zip I went back to the counter and luckily it was still under weight. (I still hope the wine bottles don’t burst.) Then I went upstairs and began the trek to my gate. International travel is kinda like a really complicated obstacle course… I first went through regular security and then stopped at a shop where I got a decongestant! I took that immediate (and slowly over the next 4ish hours I started to regain hearing.) I didn’t however regain hearing before I went through customs so the poor customs officer would have to ask me the question like 5 times before I understood… But anyway made it through customs, then went through another security checkpoint (for US travel only I think?) and then I went through what they call pre arrival customs (which I think means I can skip that at my next stop which is good). That took a while but I was actually the first person from the whole plane to get to the gate. I guess that is what happens when you arrive 8 hours before your flight… As soon as they called my group number I jumped up and got on the plane. This plane is not as big as the last one I took the long trip on, however I have more leg room and choose a window seat so sleeping in infinitely easier!
My ears actually popped on the way up this time! The decongestant did work! On the plane there were many movie choices and they fed us lunch (which was uh…not my favorite lol). I rewatched Zootopia and the one pictured below.
I think I slept about 4ish hours on that plane. It was actually comfortable! I’m always going to try to get a window from now on! That flight was about 30 minutes delayed and I had a small connection time for my flight to Denver so I had to get up and run to my gate, but I made it! The flight from Newark to Denver was three hours and there was accessible wifi with movies.
My cell phone didn’t work though when I landed…and I lost wifi before I could tell anybody was taking off in Dublin, so sorry everybody who is probably mildly worried by now! There was nothing I could do!
My ears were all together better on the last flight (still painful but not excruciating). Once in Denver I had about 30 minutes to get to my next gate. I got there on time and smoothly got onto my last flight.
My ears didn’t even hurt for take-off or much for landing. Dad was waiting for me at the gate when I got off the plane because he flew into the airport today too.
When I went to collect my luggage it never came. Turned out one of my switchovers was too fast. It will be delivered tomorrow morning. Mom and AJ picked us up. I am so happy to be home with family and my own space. On the way home we stopped and at a delicious restaurant and then I came home and showered forever!
I had a wonderful experience and I would do it 1000 times over (but I am very happy to be home!)
Highlight of My Day: Getting home and seeing family!