So we began our epic journey from the UK – USA – Mexico – UK – Singapore – Philippines – UK in one trip! Yes really, I am not sure what will be worse having sorted packing for the trip or the different stages of jet lag . However, what I do know is how incredibly lucky I am to have this amazing experience and how much I am looking forward to it, airport delays and all.
The journey didn’t start off stressfully at all, oh no, Mr ‘I’m an experienced traveller’ was still in the shower when the taxi arrived to take us to the airport. There was then a detour to the same Mr’s office to drop of expenses, which were all completed along with packing for a six week trip the morning of the flight whereas I was packed a good week before. They do say opposites attract but I did find counting to ten helps in situations like this. As I was later to find out this helped me a lot throughout the entire journey that day.
We arrived at the airport to head to London and were welcomed with the sound of a continuous fire alarm, I just felt sorry for the poor people who worked in the airport! It finally went off, to the sound of cheers, just as we were about to board the plane. Once we got to London, after being delayed due to helicopters, we went straight to the gate and got to board, which is where me and my other half parted ways. I gleefully stopped at my seat in economy plus and he headed straight to economy – oh how the tables have turned! This is the highest class I have been in, by pure fluke, and I loved it . I mean you get a pair of socks, cheese and biscuits with wine and a bit more leg room so how could you not? I did miss him of course, for a minute or so but I was comfortably sat next to a nice family – I always worry about who I will be sat next to- and I was on an aisle seat – I always worry I can’t get out- so I was all nice and settled. My concerns are a bit pathetic for a seasoned traveller but we all have our quirks.
So all in all, apart from the pilot giving a bit too much detail about the bird strike causing us to be a bit delayed, a great flight. Until we got to Chicago and joined the masses in a huge queue to get into the states, although it was the friendliest American passport control guy we have had, and then the two hour baggage claim delay. Que more clapping when the bags were drip fed through. By that point I was almost tempted to just sleep on the opposite stationary carousel if I wasn’t worried about it being switched on, or slightly scared of the security guards. There was some relief in a cute dog being trained for finding drugs – the dog was very happy and excitable with it’s little tail wagging continuously – I don’t think anyone else shared this sentiment!
It was then off to one of my favourite parts of an airport trip – finding out what car you get to drive and we certainly weren’t disappointed – we have a huge ford and it feels like going back in time to when we lived in Indiana! Even better was the fact there has been a new introduction to the US which makes us feel even more at home – an Aldi!!! We resisted stopping but couldn’t resist stopping for a MacDonalds – I had managed not to have one in all the time I lived in the states but the 24 hour day of travelling with numerous delays tipped me over the edge and in need of solace from chicken nuggets and BBQ sauce. It certainly worked!
It was then back on the interstate until we arrived at Maddison, Wisconsin for a first few days. The Hotel Red was absolutely lovely with fantastic staff. It has a lovely atmosphere and is a quirky, boutiquey mix of concrete, modern furniture, very cool lighting and lots of splashes of red.
The room was lovely and even included a full cocktail bar, yoga mat, amazing shower and a full kitchen. But my favourite piece apart from the bright red yoga mat? the coffee machine- I find it a much needed appliance to help with jetlag. Or just being able to function daily really…