Monday morning in Almaty is Sunday night in Pittsburgh
At the Frankfurt airport, the gate for Lufthansa 648 to Almaty was finally posted at 10:15 Gate B20. We went to the gate, Sheila recognized us, and checked in. Sheila, Sarah & Jim talked for a long time (until boarding).
Lufthansa photo by Michael F. McLaughlin
The plane was an Airbus 340 widebody. Sheila was in 21C, Sarah in 21D and Jim 21F (Suze originally had 21E) 21C was the isle seat next t 21A Window. Sarah sat in 21D and Jim in 21E. The plane was only about 1/3 full. Sarahs tray table (in the armrest) didnt work, so Sheila had Sarah sit in 21A. After takeoff (on time 11:15) I moved over to 21D but used 21Es tray. All announcements were in German and English. We had chicken dinner. During the flight I dozed off a few times (so did Sheila & Sarah)
The Movie was "What Women Want" I did not listen as I tried to get some shuteye.
Prior to landing we had salami and cheese sandwiches. Landed on time 22:40,l less than 19 hours after leaving Pittsburgh.
Customs was similar to Russia. Plane parked on the tarmac, we went down stairs and got on a bus which took us to the terminal.
Airport terminal is being rebuilt, went inside and upstairs. Got inn line for passport control.
After passports stamped, went downstairs to baggage claim. We pit all our checked and carryon baggage on baggage carts & waited in line for X-ray and customs. Sarah pushed our cart & Sheila pushed hers.
Went outside (69ºF) & pushed carts all the way around the construction area and to the parking lot.
There Don, Tatyana & Igor met us. Loaded stuff into a very late model Toyota minivan (with seatbelts) & left airport.
15-20 minutes later pulled into our apartment driveway.
Were on the 5th floor (elevator in the building).
Don lives around the corner, so does Tatyana. Sheilas apartment is down the street,
Apartment is much larger than I expected. 5 rooms, toilet room, bathroom, 2 balconies.
Sarah and I called Suze, had a snack & went to bed. Im in the room with the double bed. Sarah is in another room with a couch bed. 4 cribs & 3 strollers!
Jim and Sarah are now in Almaty Kazakhstan. Jim says they hardly slept on the flights so they had been up for about 30 hours. tomorrow at 10am.
The plane took off when it was supposed to. On the plane I had chicken for dinner and a bagel for breakfast. I am now at the Frankfurt Airport being bored!
They are going to see Laura tomorrow at 3pm (or 2am EST) so they are going to sleep in. Their fellow traveler, Sheila from Chicago is in a flat in another building and is going to see her son who is at Baby House #2.
They called from the phone in the flat, no report on if Jim can watch the Penguins yet!
The flat they are staying in has 6 rooms, 3 cribs and 1 stroller.
That was the extent of Sarah's report for today other than a "Hi".
Jim hopes to get on the internet in the next few days.
I'll forward their emails until Saturday when I get to take my plane rides.