Monday, August 22, 2011

The Trip Home: A Report Card

Our Itinerary: Stuttgart to Atlanta and Atlanta to Salt Lake. It was a good schedule, flying out at 11:00am and getting in at 9:00pm on the same day (flying back across 8 time zones too, so about 23 hours of travel door to door).

  • German taxi driver: A+. cheerful, knowledgeable, efficient and with candy for the kids
  • Stuttgart airport: C-. inefficient, poorly-designed, and not very helpful; had to show our passports 5 times in 5 different places. took 1 1/2 hours to process us from curb to gate. ugh.
  • Delta: B-. The flight attendants all looked "rid hard & put away wet" and the bare bones service just can't keep up with their [government subsidized] European counterparts with their dewy-skinned attendants, steaming towels, toys for the kids, and gourmet meals instead of astronaut food served in foil pouches. They got us there and did it on time, but it feels more and more like riding on a bus with a lot of rules.
  • German Family With Four Kids Who Sat Next To Us On The Flight: A++. Enjoy your time in the US. Hope everybody doesn't stare at you. Now move on -- you're making us look bad!
  • Atlanta airport: A. Clean, air-conditioned, and efficient. Managed to process our whole family through passport control, baggage claim, customs, baggage re-check and re-security in half the time of Stuttgart and even managed to make us laugh. Better than JFK, Dulles, Vienna, & Heathrow. Detroit and Atlanta are my new favorite airports.
  • Joss: B+. better than expected. played the iPad 70% of the time, slept about 15%.
  • MaddieWillSebi: A-. entertained themselves well even without personal screens and only started bashing each other and crying at the 20 hour mark.
  • Salt Lake Airport: A. Home! Full of big families, restrooms and drinking fountains! Yay! The only thing you could have done better was to lose our luggage (that is now our dream -- we make it and the suitcases don't -- then they have to deliver it to us! Ahhhh . . .).
  • SLC shuttle driver: C+. und ve vill gib him za EZ Bake Oven Avard for funcktioning on only ein lightbulb, very dim. But I guess one lightbulb is all you need to get us from SLC to Provo.
  • Our Renters: A+. the house is in great shape and the pets are happy
  • Our yardcare specialist: A. everything is green and huge and we have already harvested tomatoes, onions, zucchini, beets, basil and a wheelbarrow full of weeds
  • Jet lag: B-. Worse than usual; we're good at the staying up part, but still lacking in the sleeping part. I can't help noticing how much more I get done in a day when I wake up at 2:00am. If only I didn't walk into doorjambs.
  • Culture shock: B. Disposals, yay. Trampoline, yay. Mexican food, yay. Wii, yay. Friends, YAY! Family, YAY! "Pajama jeans, the pajamas you live in, the jeans you can sleep in." Whaaaaat?

Oh, crud. I'm home.


J said...

Well done, guys. You are an inspiration to home-bound parents everywhere.

Ann said...

Yah!!!!!! You may not be happy to be home, but we're thrilled. See you soon.

Jessica said...

Laughing all the way, Ho ho ho.

Not, you, me. As in "you kept me..."

Glad you are back. Your kids are gonna have some fantastic childhood memories.

jenlinmin said...

And nobody threw up on you on the flight? A++

Thanks for sharing all your photos and stories. We are hoping to get back to Germany again someday... and with kids next time so I know your experiences will come in handy. Good luck adjusting to not just being back home, but starting school to boot!

Pmom said...

Welcome home!

Brenda said...

You guys amaze me! After I had my third child, I realized that family photos at a studio were "too hard" on me "too stressful", etc. Enough said...(I'll miss your fun posts and pics from all those places I can't pronounce and haven't even heard of - uh oh, my ignorance is showing)

Nedra said...

Welcome Home. We've loved keeping up with you through the blogs. See you soon.
Love, MOM/Grandma

Sylvia said...

Yay! You're home! Sounds like the best study abroad ever.
Mary Ann's blog: A++++ for keeping us all entertained and letting us in on the fun with you're detailed and hilarious updates.

Mary Lynn said...

I'm sure if Sylvia had been following your blog she would say what I said in her name. Why was she logged into my computer?

Gorging on chocolate here. Mmmmmmmmm.

peter said...

Seriously an inspiration!
Cool Math