Friday, June 23, 2006

Back in Texas

We're back! It was a grueling trip- we left Ksar Hellal around 1, and got to the airport in Tunis around 5. Then H checked my carryon with my film and camera onto the plane!!!! ARGHHH. I lost it- too little sleep will do that. (I would have lost it anyway.) Then we got to London and our flight was a little delayed but the layover was short. The woman from our flight out who had the screaming boy was passing through London again, too. She was on a different outbound flight though. They were doing better. We also saw another guy that H had talked to in London on the way out. Before we got on our plane, they paged me and wanted me to go down to the tarmac to identify our luggage because the tags they'd put on in Tunis were confusing. I went down and ided seven pieces (but no stroller which we'd checked through since we didn't have time to go through immigration and pick it up in London) and they let me take my miss checked piece of hand luggage back up with me- Yeah! (Thinking about that later I realized that was pretty risky of them, but the Brits seemed more relaxed about rules- like they understand the spirit of things and don't have to follow the letter. For example, they didn't care at all that Leila was lying on top of the counter when we got our boarding passes. They actually seemed to think it was funny. It's a detachment thing.) Then we had a ten hour flight to Dallas with some stomach churning turbulence. The kids slept most of the way. Leila and I had the two seats by the window, and H took the seats in the long middle row. There were two empty seats in his row that towards the end of the flight, the woman sitting next to his seat moved into so that Ali could have her seat. I was sitting there by that time, and she apologized for not moving over sooner- she hadn't known we were together. Leila completely refused to use the bathroom on the plane even though I begged her to- Since we hadn't made a bathroom stop in London, she went for over 14 hours without going. At the end it was pretty hard for her. She's gotten really picky about toilets for some reason. In Tunis she wouldn't use people's toilets sometimes.
We finally arrived- almost an hour late- went through immigration (I'm so glad that I know now that Residents can use the citizen line. I wasted hours and hours of my life standing in the non-citizen line in the past.) Of course, our luggage didn't arrive with us! It's a mystery how it didn't after I went down and identified it. I'm just glad I took my camera and film up. (I'll find out if the film was ruined either later today or Monday- I've taken in two rolls for test processing. That's one of the reasons why I was so upset. The x-ray machines for suitcases fog exposed film- a month's worth of pics. I'm keeping my fingers crossed. Anyway, luckily the friend that had come to meet us waited. It was so good to get home. Ali fell asleep in the car and slept right through except for some night snacking. Habib and Leila also went to sleep early. I stayed up till a little after 8 and then succombed. However, we all woke up around 4. I could have slept longer except that everyone else was awake. I decided to come into work early, and I'll get to leave soon. I'm pretty brain dead.
I've been reading Kristen Rudd's blog, and realized I need to post pics!
She had some cute things that Judah says, so here are some from Leila:
"Two minutes, mommy," whenever I suggest something she doesn't like, like going to bed.
"I can't. My arms are broken," when I ask her to carry something. Then I'll fix them for her. So if I don't want to do something I tell her my arms are broken and she fixes them for me.
She told her father she didn't want him to shrink the other day because he wouldn't be able to carry her.
Her cousins thought her Arabic to be hilarious- they'd get her to say "sacerfomit" which means to "shutup" (Learned from dad) and count to five because she says "samsa" instead of "hamza" for five. She also learned to sing a song and corrects me because I don't know the words to it.
Ali was charming as usual on the flight. They both slept a lot. He got frustrated because he couldn't get down and crawl around. Right now he's really into practicing his walking, and he'll insist on someone holding his hand so he can walk around. When we stop he screams. He also likes to kick a ball around while holding onto someone's hand. The cousins were crying when they kissed the kids goodbye.
Today Leila said "Can we go to Ohm Mohammed's house?" I wanted to say, "no way will I endure another trip like that for at least a year," but instead I explained it was too far away. She already misses her cousins, but I think she was ready to come home.

No comments: