Today is a long day. The same 9 hours will be lived twice as I fly from Eastern Europe to Canada. I will fly over 9 different time zones and thus gain an hour every time I do – so living that hour a second time. It is really a funny feeling. You leave Moscow at 2:00p and fly to Frankfort, Germany… a 3 hour and 30 minute flight and arrive an hour and a half after you take off… because you have flown west over two time zones.
Because it is winter the trip always has a big “if” attached to it. If the weather and the machinery cooperates then I will be flying straight home from here today. That means in the next 30 hours I need to have good weather in four different areas of the world, have all flights arrive and depart on time, and have airplanes that do not have issues with frozen cargo doors (my last trip), plane three hours late arriving (my last trip), too many people wanting the same flight (my last trip) and not enough time between a late arrival and the departure time of the next flight (my last trip). However, because I seem to do a lot of flying I have had to learn to simply relax and say over and over again, “I will get there when I get there” because there is nothing you can do about any of the delays and cancellations.
So, you learn quickly to carry an extra carry-on bag that contains some needed essentials – one complete set of clean clothes, toothbrush and paste, and other personal necessities. When stranded overnight some place you don’t get to have your luggage back as it simply sits waiting in the baggage system for your next departure. So, you need to carry clean clothes with you on the plane so you have them with you. An extra book is good – English books (good ones worth reading) are hard to find in most overseas airports. The plug-in and adaptor (electrical outlets are different in each nation) for your laptop computer as by now the battery is running low, extra funds (Euros) or a credit card that works overseas so that you can pay for the hotel and meals….lessons learned the hard way.
So, if everything cooperates then I will be home tonight. If not, I will be in an airport or a hotel room reading and wishing I was home. I am simply beginning the trip to the airport as you read this – hotel to airport is all I need to do today for ground travel – as we drove from Ivanovo to Moscow (5 hours in good weather) late last night and stayed overnight in an okay hotel 10 minutes from the airport. Short sleep but the hot shower this morning was a good start to a long day.
Please pray for safe travel and good weather and that all connections will be made on time.