I think it works out to be about 36 hours of travel time from when we left the guest house to when we arrived at our front door.
It is strange to think we were in the snow just the other day and today we are melting with the rest of Melbourne (actually it hasn't been too hot today).
Before we left on Saturday, a new family arrived at the guest house with their tube fed daughter. They are from South Africa. We offloaded all the extra things we weren't taking back to Australia (mostly food). We took them for the walk to the hospital as we had our last meeting at 12. They were as grateful as I remember being when we first arrived and met the NZ family who showed us around!
Nissim and their daughter are about the same size and age and played together so well it was a shame they hadn't been in our group.
The flights home were easy enough, we wouldn't want to do it again anytime soon, but it wasn't too bad.
We started with an hour or so delay from Graz to Frankfurt (snow). After getting bored in the business lounge we discovered a kids area with a slide and climby thing in the boarding gate area.
The snow looked beautiful falling in the bright lights of the airport runway. Once we boarded the plane they had to wash the snow and ice off before departure, which took ages.
Finally in the sky and flying up through the snow, wow, I have never seen anything like it. Because we were going so fast the snow looked like streaky white lines. It actually looked terrifying. Nissim slept in my arms for the hour long flight.
We didn't have long to wait in Frankfurt, so no business lounge time. We found our way from Lufthansa to Qantas with not too much trouble. There were a few very helpful people scattered around the massive maze of corridors, thank god.
We had priority boarding as we have bubbies and got on first.
One lovely thing about Graz and Frankfurt was that they let us keep the double pram right up until we walked through the boarding gate! This made a HUGE difference as we didn't have to carry kids and carry on bags.
Flying with the babies isn't hard, it is the 'in transit' bits that are difficult and exhausting. The babies don't cope well in between flights, Nissim hates that he is woken up and then not allowed to run around everywhere and Tova just hates it because.
We fed Tova in most boarding lounges, with the syringe, at least these days there is no tube going into her stomach! It just feels a bit funny in public.
Lovely business seats! Nissim remembered all the fun things from our last flights 5 weeks ago. He played with the light, on, off, on, off, on, off, on, off. We were happy because he was happy.
We had two seats at the window and one seat on the isle, the window side also had the bassinet, a blessing!
Next to the isle seat were two passengers who had been upgraded from economy seats for free. They were a lovely couple who have been married for over 40 years. They gave us some magic stop jet lag pills (herbal), that have so far seemed to have helped. The kids were great and slept lots and played on the massive seats and 3 rows worth of room we had. How will we every fly economy again?
In Singapore we didn't have time to go to the business lounge as there wasn't long until our connecting flight. The kids were very unhappy to be woken and restricted yet again. Poor little things. Yuval and I were pretty tired and both trying to keep it all together while waiting for the gate to open. Again, priority and first to board. Upstairs this time. Newer plane, slightly different and nicer seats.
After stressing out a very nice flight attendant by rearranging about 6 passengers we managed to have the two seats at the window with the bassinet and an isle seat next to another family of 4 (one in the middle and two by the other window). Also after a very long time on the tarmac with very unhappy restricted babies we were finally in the air and able to let the kids be free. They both slept, watched tv and played nicely..
We had a straight flight from Singapore to Melbourne, making it easier than swapping planes at Sydney.
We landed in Melbourne, no more security checks, no more changing planes, only one more taxi ride with the destination of our house! It felt really strange.
Tova recognised the area around Chadstone and was mesmerised looking out the window the rest of the way home.
36 or more hours later we arrived at our front door. The grapes are growing but still not ripe, all the plums are gone from the front trees (we missed eating them this year), there are ripe figs on the front tree, the vegie patch has an amazing array of ready to eat food and mum had left heaps of cooked food for us in the fridge. She had also left Tova some baby fruit puree and pudding! She is the best mum in the world!
Our new laundry is ready to have the washing machine put in it (should happen today) and I had the first shower in the new bathroom.
The kids were happy to see all their toys and bedrooms.
The grandparents said we don't look too fat, they were expecting allot worse, especially with Nissim. They did notice how skinny Tova has become.
I felt the emotion and pride in my mums voice when she watched Tova eat for the first time yesterday. Mum says that Nissim looks more grown up, like a little boy now, she is also impressed about his walking skills. Grandpa Russel got a hug (I don't even get hugs).
So, after much sleep and not too much trouble I have awoken at 7am on Tuesday the 2nd of Feb 2010 in my bed in Melbourne, feeling fine, a bit heavy, but fine.
The kids almost slept through the night from about 10pm (one feeding frenzy for us all at about 3am) and are still asleep now at 8am (so is my lovely exhausted husband).
I have a feeling that my (and Tova's) jet lag wont be so bad this time.
We haven't tube fed Tova for more than a week, and in the last 3 weeks we have only fed her a little bit via tube when she was sick.
We will take the tube out today or tomorrow I think. WOW! I will have to blog that.
No more snow! It is already hot this morning.
Tova is an eating person!
Our new life starts now....