Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Travel "woes"

I'm a bit disappointed right now. My spirits have been a bit dashed.

We thought we had all of our storknesting travel figured out. However, as I am sure you all know from your own life disappointments, one little "glitch" can cause the entire house of cards to come crumbling down.

We thought that Sunexpress airlines was offering tickets to Germany for about $100 each. However, when we tried to purchase them, we realized that in fact, it was only the leg to Istanbul that was $100. The leg from Istanbul to Frankfurt would cost another $200 each.

When tickets were just $100 a piece, we came up with a plan. A plan that would allow me not to have to travel with the boys myself. A plan that would allow us to be away from JB the minimal amount of time. A plan that would allow Veronica to travel with us.

But when a ticket is $300 a piece, you have to start looking at things differently -- especially when you are multiplying all tickets x 5 (our family and Veronica). $500 compared to $1500 obviously registers in your pocketbooks quite differently.

It now appears that I will have to take a rotator (this is the free military flight from here to Germany) a week earlier than I would like. I just can't wait for the rotator the following week. I'll be too close to 36 weeks (you are not allowed to fly past 36 weeks commercially or via rotator.) In addition, that week is the week after school gets out and we are pretty confident the rotator will be booked solid. While I am guaranteed a seat, the boys and JB are not. (And Veronica has to fly commercially either way.)

So I'm just feeling a little frustrated. This change of plans means that I will have to fly the rotator by myself, 36 weeks pregnant, with both boys. Veronica will fly commercially separately. JB will come out a week later, hopefully via the very full rotator full of school children returning home to the States for summer vacation.

As I write this, it doesn't seem like that big of a deal. And I am trying to convince myself that it is not. But I just got my hopes up and then found them a bit dashed.


And while I recognize that the fall is a long way away, all these travel issues have left me woe-ing how to handle our hopeful return to the States sometime in November of this year. We have not been back to the States yet. It appears that we will probably not be able to go home until late fall. (Maybe November?) JB would like to time our trip home with a Wilderness Medicine Conference being held somewhere out west. I really do not feel like going back to South Florida. I don't feel like dealing with the long travel days and "forcing" three children to flip their sleep. But I do want the boys to be able to see their grandparents and aunts and uncles and cousins.

Here's the issue. JB will not be able to get more than 10-14 days off at one time. That is just not enough time to make it worth it for me and the three kiddos to come to the States. If we are going to go and flip sleep, we need to stay 3 weeks at least. (This is basically a "rule" when you talk to people who make the trip. Don't get for less than 3 weeks or the sleep battles will not be worth it.)

But how do I get home without JB? If we fly the rotator, my only choice is to do it by myself. I can't take a non-military person with me on the rotator. Sigh ...

So my options are: recruit someone to come back with us and fly commercially with our daughter (the daughter would be a free ticket) while I fly with the boys. Or, fly back with all three kiddos by myself. Or, go back with JB after too short a visit.

More decisions!

Just pray for us. Lots to be considering!


Anonymous said...

aww...i hate all the travel stuff...there came a time once overseas i just could not even look at anything from travel had to leave it to Ed as my mind got racing - I understand...
...these are just "greenlighting" thoughts...maybe this is the season of life to let people come see you and wait til the baby is a bit older and you are stronger and timings work out better? This is alot of planning for you to be thinking about with the planning for Germany, having a baby etc...(just a Tante's musings -i know you are young and strong...but still...dont overdo hon k? another 6 months will go faster and the kids are young enuf that the most important memory they'll have is of being with you and Jon wherever! actually all they'll remember is the pictures you show 'em...So if you need a break from "thinking" about traveling -take it and just muse on the fact that Gramma Di and Grampa Coach and the other gramma are all coming to see you in Germany! yeah! yeah! yeah! i love you! Tante Jan

Jenny said...

Frustrating for sure! I hope it all works out, and you can find an alternative to getting over here in the summer.
Also, you are right, you absolutely do not want to go to States if it is only for 10-14 days. We are going for a little over 3 weeks, and even that seems short. My girls actually do much better going than coming back. Caroline slept through the night our first evening back (to America) this past fall, but Hannah was up several nights in a row. It was way worse coming back. Just one of those things you have to do... I absolutely need to go back once a year, for my sanity, so it is worth it to me. I pray you don't have to do that flight alone though. I have been too chicken to do it by myself as of yet.

Flakymn said...

I actually agree with you Tante Jan. I've been thinking the same thing myself. It's the fact that JB's parents are going to be able to make it here that makes me want to go home and see them (because the military will let us do the rotator which is really cheap.)


Joy Z said...

My dear friend, I think instead of looking forward so much at this point, it might serve you instead to look back and remember what God has done. Since your plans and travels began to Turkey last spring, has there been a single detail that hasn't worked out? Think Scrubs, think your trip to Greece. I'm sure you'll be able to come up with a dozen or so instances where you were concerned with the details, unsure how it would work out, and then God, in his love and mercy to you, took care of the details and kept you all safe and together. Perhaps you could write out a list, or review your blog for all the things that God has worked out for you. Then it will give you faith for what is to come. In Hebrews 6, when talking of faith, we are encouraged to "look back", to remember what God as done on our behalf.

So, yes, I will pray for you and all the details and I will do it with faith, knowing that God certainly cares for you, his daughter. And I will look for a post in the near future which details all the worked-out plans! Love ya!

Anonymous said...

We go from Michigan to Spain every year (6 hr. time difference) for 10-14 days and have never had a problem with sleep. It usually takes a few days to adjust. (I have a 7 and 3 year old and have flown since they were infants.) I would not, however, want to do an international flight by myself with more than one kid especially how young yours are. Good luck!

Flakymn said...

Thank you Joy. I am going to do what you said. Blog of answered prayers to come!

Emily said...

Praying for you and your decision making. I've been weighing possibly doing a cross-country flight this fall with three kids under the age of three by myself, and it scares me silly - and that's only a five hour flight, let alone a cross-the-world flight! Praying that the Lord would give you strength and wisdom.

Anonymous said...

Wen -JB's parents are going to be able to make it here or are not! I sure can understand if they aren't going to get to come there why you want to go home! I think i'd look at the gal who does Spain every year then and say "we can do it!" somehow -I think I can, I think I can, I think I can...I remember one year we went home (my brother's wedding) and the flights/waits were so long -when we got to CA and had just one more flight to get to Chicago -Eddie threw himself on the floor and said, "i'm not going on another plane" At the time it was distressing and we were all exhausted -now we look back and it's a really funny story we tell and re-tell....poor guy!tante Jan