I’ve been back from Tanzania, Africa for a week now and I’m just now starting to feel good again. The combination of long flights, traveler’s diarrhea, lack of sleep, and multiple customs checks had me leaving half empty water bottles here, there and everywhere throughout the airports.
After two weeks on safari dealing with tear-it-yourself toilet paper in a wide variety and qualities of privies, in the Amsterdam’s Schipol airport bathroom when toilet paper separated evenly I was surprised.
A stern woman’s voice came over the loudspeakers repeatedly giving travelers’ name and saying in a cold tome of voice, “You are delaying the departure of your flight. If you do not arrive at the gate within two minutes, your baggage will be removed and the flight will depart without you.”
Throughout the eight-hour flight to Minneapolis babies screamed in surround sound all through the plane. I finally decided it must be Take Your Screaming baby out of the Country Day in the Netherlands. I have never been on a flight with so many upset infants. Note: The two babies closest to Judy and me were adorable and sweet-tempered.
In Minneapolis, Judy and I got through yet another customs easily. While waiting for our friends who traveled with us, I felt (another) urgent need to find a bathroom. Moving quickly I did not pay close attention to my surroundings. When I tried to find my way back to the Caribou Coffee where Judy was waiting I discovered I was lost. It was like being at the hub of a wagon wheel. I stopped at an information booth and asked for the closest Caribou Coffee. I went where I was directed and nothing looked familiar. I returned to the information booth where I learned there were Caribou Coffee stores in every possible direction. When I asked for the one just outside the international passengers arrival spot I got the directions I needed.
It was hotter in Minneapolis (at least 100 degrees) than it had been the entire time I had been in Africa.
In Amsterdam, Judy, my friends and I had been chatting with a young man from Kenya who traveling to Minneapolis, MN to start a graduate program. We warned him about how cold it got there. We joked that after he arrived to find temperatures in the three digits, he wouldn’t believe anything we said to him.
In keeping the plane to Kansas City at a reasonable temperature, mist was pouring out of air vents. It looked like tule fog rising in the Central Valley of California.
Once home we slept for fourteen hours.
PS: Thanks to WWK writers for catching the errors I was too time lagged, no plane lagged?,not quite, jet-lagged to see.