Thursday, January 7, 2010

The Trip Home - Dec 11

Waking up at 3am, after 3 hours of sleep, I began the adventure of bringing our five children home. We loaded our bags and our bodies into 2 taxis and headed to the Lima airport. We were met by the wonderful, Peruvian staff of American Airlines, who were waiting for us. They were notifiied that a crazy lady was planning to travel alone with her 5 children. :) I pulled out the passports, visas and all the documents showing I had, in truth, adopted them and had the right to travel with them to the U.S. We waited an hour or two before boarding the plane and started the 7 hour flight.
I sat with Yen and Zuzu and Karina, Dany and Araceli were in the row behind. All boasted about being brave, until the plane began speeding down the runway. I slipped my arms through the spaces between the seats and the kids grabbed my hands, gripping tight. However, once in the air, my hands were released and the series of "ooooo's" and "ahhhh's" began. The kids were prepared with all kinds of goodies and activities in their backpacks and enjoyed taking pictures!

The plane ride was full of interesting 'firsts.' I had to go to the bathroom with each of them, opening the door, turning on the light and showing how it all worked - which meant staying in the small bathroom while they did their thing. Dany was amazed that soda came in a can and did much better drinking it after a little instruction. They each had headphones of their own to use to listen to movies shown up on the screen or the radio. They even got to eat airplane food. A nice guy sat in the row next to me and was so helpful, picking up things the kids dropped, answering questions and even offering to take them to the restroom after the 4th or 5th time.

Arriving in Miami led us to our encounter with Homeland Security. We sat in a small, glass walled room with about 55 other immigrants waiting for approval to enter. The kids were troopers as we waited for 4 hours for them to just take one fingerprint. Off we went to the next flight, which would give us another 4 hours in the air before arriving to Denver. Traveling alone with my kids for the first time went amazing well! Seriously a blessing! I think it's because Yen, 5 yrs old, read all of the instructions.