Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Finally we arrived in USA...

Kids on the plane (pssstt... watch that boy)

I always wanted to share my dream trip with my friends and now a competition called "Jiyo Life Moments" Sponsored by Club Mahindra and Indiblogger has pushed me into doing this.

If possible help me out by posting some comments and voting for me on the indiblogger

I was worried about my kids reaction to their first flight. They were cool in the beginning.

Farheena started to feel uncomfortable after a while and refused to eat anything. Rayyan in his excitement of taking pictures somehow messed with the mobile phone and the SIM was lost. I was a bit panicky at this because I had no way to get in touch with Paula now after we were to land in USA. I was angry but got control over myself before I said anything. I told myself he was excited and nervous and I should not spoil the memories of his first flight by being angry or scolding him. So I had to calm down and do whatever I had to do when the time would come. We landed in Dubai and had a break of 2 hours there. There we met a couple from Germany in the waiting room. The woman had fractured her leg on her visit to India. Farheena had vomited on the plane earlier and now refused to eat anything. I had a small chat with Rizwan who had torrents of advice for me.

Back into the jet and we were leaving for NYC. I could not actually believe that this was happening but it was. I had seen the pictures of JFK airport and it sort of overwhelmed me with its enormousness. I wondered how would we ever know what terminal to get into for our FL flight.

I knew it would terrify the kids if they knew I was worried, so I had to be the jolly mom on tour of USA and that I was. The invisible help was at hand as we found a very nice person in JFK who guided us and helped us out a lot. At the port of entry I was hit by another wave of nervousness where I recalled the soothsayers words which had warned me about being sent back to India from that point if they felt we should not be visiting USA. But we were asked just a few questions and soon were given permission to enter the country of USA.

Finally we WERE in USA! Meanwhile the woman who was supposed to push Farheena’s wheelchair had vanished somewhere. The officer who had helped us earlier was back on seeing me pushing the wheelchair and walking aimlessly ;). Though an officer he was willing to push Farheena’s wheelchair around though we did not ask for his help. In fact we said we could manage it but he insisted. He guided us to pick up our luggage, get it cleared in the customs etc. This person who was going about doing his duty never knew what it meant for us and how much difference he made to our trip. Finally we were put in a taxi which would take us to the terminal where we were to board the flight to FL and I saw him pay the taxi driver the fare and tip also. He told us not to pay anything for the taxi at all. After thanking him we said bye to him.

At the airport I tried to get some tea (the mamooli chai ) or coffee for Farheena as I was worried about her being dehydrated. I saw a coffee shop and as the flight was 3 hours away I decided to go and bring some coffee for Farheena. To my horror the food in a cafĂ© looked so different and expensive. My mind which always thought in Indian currency refused to accept the prizes on the eatables there LOL. Now I wish I had someone to guide me there as I thought I would get a coffee (ie with milk and sugar) when I ask for it. But all I got was black coffee without sugar or milk. Farheena refused to even look at the cup so I tried it and went cough cough puke puke… eeewwwwww. So I went back there looking for sugar and milk which I found in small sachets. I thought it was very funny. I did not like the coffee but gulped it down because I was not about to waste the money I had spent on it ;). Finally we got on the flight and landed in Tampa.

Once in Tampa we just went with the person who pushed Farheena’s wheel chair and he left us near the airport door where people were picking up their friends or relatives and asked for a tip of 3$ . I had some change with me (from the coffee shop) and so paid him. We waited there for 20 minutes or so and then Rayyan suggested for me to get inside and look for Paula as we were sure she would not be late. So in I went looking for her. It was getting late and the airport wore a deserted look. A lady was sweeping the floors and I asked her how to use the telephone. Luckily I knew Paula’s number by heart. I asked for change but she paid for the call and told me it is OK. As I was talking to Paula I was surprised to hear her voice so clear. I was amazed how different phones are in USA as I could hear her as though she was talking to me standing right there in front of me where a woman stood wearing purple dress talking in her phone. As I was talking to Paula I could see her lip move to the words being said in the phone. The told the woman who was cleaning that may be I had found my friend as I think it the woman talking into the phone right there in front of me was actually the person talking to me over the phone.

She said to me “ If that is your friend then you better find her because she has looked past you four times and I don’t think she is ever going to find you”. So I shouted “ Pee, here I am”. The rest you can watch on the video.

The placard she was supposed to hold was brought out after she met us.. it was beautiful...

To be continued.


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