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.....Adopting in Almaty.....The Laura Edition......
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Saturday 05.19.2001

Day 20

The alarm went off at 3:30 am so we could get ready for our 7am flight to Frankfurt. Suze & Jim showered & we were all in the lobby at 4:30am, Natasha & Anantoly arrived. Jim & Sheila checked out & we left for Shermetyevo airport around 4:45am.
We got to the airport around 5:15am,
A porter took our bags & we checked in & said bye 7 thanks to Natasha.
Next line was passport control. After that we checked in at gate (14). We started to board after 6:30 am. The Lufthansa plane was a narrow body airbus 320. We were in 14d/e/f 7 Sheila was in 18d. We were in the second row in economy. The plane was packed, no empty seats & it took time to get everyone on, so the plane left 1/2 hour late at 7:30am.
The pilot announced that he’d make up the time enroute & we’d still land at 8:30am Frankfurt time.
Breakfast was omelet (cheese) with hash browns, cold cuts (salami & pepperjack cheese Laura made a face on that), roll, croissant & yogurt.
Laura was fine on the flight. Ben fussed a few times & Sheila walked & stood with him.
At Frankfurt, we didn’t have a parking place at a gate, so we were bussed to terminal 1.
We saw Sheila’s flight to Chicago posted (B23), took a few pictures & said good-byes.
At passport control we were told to get a 1-day visa for Laura at the office. I changed $20 into 37.20 DM & paid 10 DM for a 3-day visa for Laura.
We got a cart & got the luggage & took the cart to the Sheraton. Checked into the tower reception the 9th(top) floor & they had the room ready by 10:15am.
Very large room with a king size bed, two twin beds & a crib,
Went back to the 9th floor lounge for comp breakfast (food served all day in the lounge).
American style breakfast with superb OJ.
Registered for afternoon Gray Line tour of Rhine Valley & took a nap.
Grabbed a snack/drink from the 9th floor lounge & went down for the tour. Gray Line guy picked us up & we picked up others at Terminal 1.
We drove to downtown Frankfurt. Gray Line office is where we paid & waited for the tour departure at 3:15.
Talked with a family from Brooklyn/San Diego.
At 3:15 walked down the block & got in a fancy Mercedes tour bus. The tour was in English/ Spanish.
Headed west towards the Rhine Valley. Went past Wiesbaden 7 rove along the river all the way to Wald.
Got off the bus & waited for the boat. A very large "water Taxi" came & we got on as others got off.
Headed upriver (east) & sailed for 1.5 hours (14km) to Assmannhausen. Got off and got back on the bus & drove east to Rudenshoen where we got off and went to Weinerwald (Weiner World?) for dinner. Beer was terrific. Waitress dropped a diet coke & Suze got hit.
After dinner, headed back to Frankfurt.
Dropped off at Terminal 1 & walked back to the Sheraton.
Sarah was sick in the bathroom.
Called BeeMa & Mike (He said "one more day") & had a snack & went to bed.
Got up at 7:30 am had breakfast, checked out & checked in at US Airway.
Then went to McDonald’s where Sarah introduced Laura to the playland.
Checked in at gate (E2) & we are waiting to board.

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