Friday, October 22, 2010

LONG awaited arrival

I have found myself stalling when posting my Australian adventure on here. AND, I have held out on posting to facebook till I could take the time to share with my bloggy blog blog!  A sweet blogger said it best when it came to putting her trip to Ireland into words for her blog ... "It's not that I don't have stories to tell, things to say, pictures to share, details to divulge; no, that's not it at all.  I know there is no possible way I could put into words how much this trip meant to me."  I couldn't agree more with Lauren as it's almost impossible to really capture the two weeks hubby and I had in Australia.  Being able to visit the country, soak up their culture, and experience their way of life ... it has given me the traveling bug!  

With that being said, I want to blog about Australia so I will always remember the bits and pieces that made it as special for Gabe and myself.


I planned our entire trip without any hiccups until the dreaded evening before leaving town.  Yes, at exactly 8pm (we were catching a 8am flight the following morning).  I stopped by the library to return my stack of books and thought it would be wise to glance over them one more time to jot down any last minute restaurants that caught my eye and/or check for important details before visiting another country.  

These were lifesavers considering they're $30 a pop at Barnes & Noble,
(hence why I <3 THE LIBRARY)

After having them over a month and reading them multiple times, AT that very moment, I finally decided to read over the section "What to bring."  Genius, right?!  Anyways, I'm skimming along, nodding my head until I read: Australia Visa????  Come again ... I didn't recall reading about that before now, no one spoke about it, and I knew they weren't just referring to a form of plastic payment.  I realized this might be an essential detail to entering another country and went straight home to research it.  After checking a few sites, I realized it was a required item to enter the country and panicked.  What to do ... call my momma in Texas who is a world traveler.  It was probably 11pm her time, and she was dead asleep.  All I said to her was, "Do I need a Visa for Australia?"  I didn't have time for "Hello" or "Sorry to wake you!"  She paused, and then said, "I don't know," but in actuality I could hear in her voice that we were in trouble.  I call Gabe as he was at the office wrapping things up, and said, "Come home now!  We don't have our Visa's."  At that moment, Mom, Dad, Gabe, and I are all on the computers googling how to get a Visa.  Some sites said a few weeks, some said a few days, and then I found the instant approval within 90 seconds.  YES PLEASE!!!!  I am sure I paid an arm and a leg for it, but after having every arrangement paid for the next two weeks .... I would have paid whatever it took to ensure we could get there.  With that being said, we got our Visa as it linked it electronically to our passports.  God was beyond good to us to hold us tightly in the palm of his hands, guiding us every step of the way.  Thank you, thank you!

Now the real fun began:  This Quantas plane AKA Mother Ship!!!!!
and it made traveling 14+ hours fun :)

(this shot was once we arrived to Sydney)

We asked about upgrading to First Class since there were still seats available .... Pulled the card of, "It's my wife's big 25th birthday celebration to Australia."  Oh, only $22k PER PERSON.  Wow, that's funny and obviously not even an option .... Do rich people really pay that ON TOP of the original cost of the flight?!?!?!  With that being said, we happily took our seat in Economy and were pleased to find out that the middle seat between us was open.  So, we had an entire row to ourselves and got to spread out.   

Individual flatscreens with every TV/Movies/News you could imagine, 
and a personal remote control to navigate!

My Kindle was a dream come true on this trip, seriously best friend, 
aside from Gabe!

Gabe encouraged me to stay up as long as possible to get close to Sydney sleep schedule, so we could begin getting acclimated. Finally, I went to sleep at 2:30am LA time and slept an entire 7hrs without flinching. Woke up to the breakfast cart 90 minutes before landing - tasty egg frittata for breakfast.

I cannot believe I am posting this, but it is too good to leave out!  
I was SOOOO groggy when I woke up :)

I was really impressed with out quickly the trip went by, and this has given me hope that I can survive long flights when I get to travel the world in the near future (praying I get to!!!).  The other joy during the flight was tracking our progress ...

To be continued ....  
Next up:  Sydney


Liesl @ FabulousFashions4SensibleStyle said...

Woo Hoo!!! How exciting! Have a FABULOUS time in one of my favorite cities!!!

Liesl :)

Ambs said...

I am SOOOO jealous! And I loved those little personal TV's when I went to France! Especially the part where you can look at where over the map you are

CMae said...

Def didn't know about the Visa that with all countries or just Australia? Good to case I ever leave the US...I've only been to Mexico! LOL

Caroline said...

Australia is such an amazing place!! So happy you had a great trip!! xo

Neha said...

Can't wait to read more!! Post other details and pictures soon!

Glad you had a fun trip!

Janet Dillon Robinson said...

This is an amazing entry, you're doing a great job recounting your adventure!! :)

..and what the heck, who has $22,000 per person to drop on a first class seat?! lol

Jordan said...

OMW! I can't imagine how freaked out you guys were when you realized you need visa's. I can't believe no one told you about them!! Can't wait to see more :-)

Michelle A'etonu said...

i soooo want to go to australia one of these days. and i want a kindle when i do!

Jen said...

Oh gosh I cannot believe about the Visa's; that must have been SO frightening! I'm so glad the recaps have started!! :)

Jessica said...

Am I a huge dork because I would love to take an overnight flight? I've never been anywhere that far away!

Katie said...

YAY! I've been excited to read about your Australian adventure. My hubby and I always say we're going to retire to Australia (even though neither of us have been)! Glad you had an unforgettable trip, and I can't wait to read more :)

Meghan said...

Oh, I cannot wait to hear more about your adventures!!! I have always wanted to visit Australia!

I took my first international flight this summer and I LOVED the TV's and the flight tracker! I had so much fun!

Lauren said...

Do you understand that just while READING this post my heart jumped into my throat upon the words "Australian Visa"... I can only imagine the panic you felt at that moment! I am SO HAPPY you were able to get one last-minute, and even more happy that God (yes, I truly believe it was Him) gave you the idea to peek back into that book before taking it back!

And you look simply adorable on the flight!

Allie said...

That is too much fun traveling with your husband! Justin and I always get so rekindled on trips together...I cant even imagine if we got to go to Australia! Sooo excited to hear about it and see all your fun pics!

Ben and Emily said...

Thank God for instant Visa approval! If we ever make it to Australia, I'll be sure to remember this info!

Can't wait to hear more and live vicariously through you!

Neely said...

I would freak out if that happened to me. Good thing you're so level headed :) I love the flatscreens on intl flights so great! What did you read on your kindle??? Im getting one for XMAS so pumped!

Crazy Shenanigans said...

Oh I would have completely freaked out when it came to the visa mishap! I'm glad it all worked out! I'm so excited your finally blogging about your trip!

Teresa said...

I was hanging on EVERY word of this!
LOVE hearing about your fabulous adventure to Australia!
What an INCREDIBLE trip!
Can't IMAGINE what you must have gone through about the VISA!
Thank GOodness for sweet parents!
I always call my parent's in times of PANIC! ;o)
Poor parents! ;o)
I LOVE that morning pic of your sparky self!
And I know what you mean about tracking the trip!
Don't you love waking up in the morning and seeing how close you are to land after traveling across all that water!
Nothing like that feeling of FINALLY making is over~seas!
Looking forward to more pics!
I know you and GABE loved this special time together!

Ali said...

Oh, I am LOVING this! I just got back from a 2 week trip to Europe and am blogging about it too. Australia is my next place, I this is amazing to read!

Lisa E said...

Can't wait to hear the rest! And I'm totally jealous that you're able to sleep so well on board!

Welcome to wanderlust; it's powerful and wonderful! And if you can handle the LA - Sydney flight, you can fly anywhere!

Anonymous said...

I'm a new follower. Recently saw your blog and it's ADORABLE!

Tiffany said...

Love it! Can't wait to see more...Australia is definitely on my bucket list!

SEW said...

I've been waiting to hear about your Austrailia trip!! And I love that you posted that picture of you after you wake up--I feel like I look like that after a 4 hour flight haha!!

Anonymous said...

So glad you were able to get the visa last minute! That's amazing! Looks like you know all the tricks to survive on a long flight! Looking forward to more recaps :)

Tatiana said...

I think I would have had a heart attack the moment I found out we needed a visa for our next day trip! Holy cow, that was a really close call! It's good to know that they have 90 sec visa approvals! That's pretty darn amazing :-) I'm so glad everything turned out great :-)

Jenn @ West Sac Honey said...

OMG thank goodness for 90 sec approvals! I went with a tour group didn't know about visa's. Can't wait to see Syndey!

d.a.r. said...

Oh my goooossshhh, that would have freaked me out, but it sounds like despite the visa issue, things went really smoothly! What a fun trip!

Carol {Everyday Delights} said...

Oh my gosh the visa thing is so scary! Good to know for if I ever go there. I can't wait to see the rest of your pics! And $22,000 a ticket?! Seriously?????

Marian said...

I always stalk the flight status!!! Can't wait to hear more

Cassie said...

I would have freaked out about the whole visa thing. Thankfully it all worked!

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