Saturday, September 6, 2008

Catching Up

So, it is nearing the end of my first day here and I thought that I should relay the story of my travels before I start forgetting things.

I woke up at 6:30 on Thursday morning (which I am not at all happy about since I dont sleep on planes) and I set up AIM accounts for my parents so that we can actually talk to each other (audio chat) for free while I'm over here. We ended up leaving the house at about 11:30, only 30 minutes after we planned to leave, which is really good for us. I had my parents stop at Jack in the Box so that I could get some stuffed jalapenos (the last thing on the list of foods I wanted to eat before I got over here and couldn't get them anymore), then we were on our way. For lunch we stopped at Izzy's in Santa Monica which was really good. After lunch we were off to the airport.

We got to the airport with 3 hours until my flight and after I checked my bags I held off on going through security at my parents' request (really my dad) for a while. This ended up being a good thing because I wound up in line to go through security behind Channing Tatum from Step Up (and a few other movies...most recently a war movie I think), which I certainly can't complain about. After getting through security I made my way over to Starbucks to stock up on some coffee and then set about trying to burn through my cell minutes so that they wouldn't go to waste. They finally let us board (from a different gate than the one on the ticket...grrr) and then we had to sit in the plane for about 30 minutes because the toilet full light was on and they had to check that they weren't before we could leave, then reset the system and fill out a bunch of paperwork. Finally we left and I discovered that they had some good movies available and I promptly began watching Made of Honor, then moved on to Sex in the City. I was planning on watching Indiana Jones, but the guy beside me was watching it and it just didn't look worth it. After I finished those movies I got out my new journal and decided to break it in a little which took up some time, then I attempted to sleep. That didnt work at all, so I turned the TV thing on and watched an episode of Monk. After Monk I tried sleeping again and when it didn't work I gave up and started reading Twilight, which I read on and off for the rest of the flight.

At Heathrow I had to switch terminals, which was surprisingly easy, then go through border control where the man was not happy that I told him I'd be living in Ireland for 9 months and I had to fill out a bunch of paperwork and show him my UCC acceptance letter. When I finally made it through all of the security and stuff I found that my flight was delayed by 1 hr 15 min. That scared me a bit because it put me dangerously close to getting in around the time that the office at my apartments closes. So, instead of getting coffee I opted to hook up to the internet and emailed the apartment people and my dad (who called the apartment people for me, which was nice since I couldn't find a phone). Finally they announced the gate for my flight and I headed over there. Once on the plane we sat there for another 30 minutes so my flight that was supposed to arrive at about 3:30 pm ended up getting in at 5:00 pm. By 5:20 I had made it through the passport check (and spoke with another guy who wasn't happy that I was staying for so long) and went to go get my bags thinking that if that went quickly then I would probably be able to make it to the apartment before 6. Well, naturally, it didn't go quickly at all. Finally our bags showed up at 5:45 and I grabbed mine (I, naturally, was one of the last 10 people waiting there out of probably like 60 or 70), put them on a trolley and wheeled them out to the taxis. I went to the first one and the guy got out and helped me with my bags, then we were off. Thankfully he knew exactly where I was talking about. On the way to the apartment he told me a bunch of stories about his travels and pointed out places to me, such as The Market (picture in the last post) and the police station that is almost right across the street from me. When we got to the apartment (which was surprisingly soon) he helped me with my bags again and then waited to make sure that I made it inside. He was a very sweet old man. Definitely gave me a great first impression of Ireland.

A very nice lady named Margaret let me in and helped me move my stuff up to the apartment and showed me around. After she left I set up my internet connection (very important since I dont have a phone to call and tell anyone that I got here safely) and got settled. I eventually ended up going to bed at about 11 and slept for 12 1/2 hrs.

This post has gotten really long, so I think that today's events will be in a different one that I may post tonight or possibly in the morning.


marbea said...

All your planning has paid off in spades!
I am so proud of you.

life in red shoes said...

Did YOU fill up the toilet after drinking all that coffee? All that international traveling has certainly paid off, keep up the great posts, we'd love some more pics!