Wednesday, April 22, 2015
Day 36: Friday April 17
Today was my last day in Australia. I am so heartbroken to be saying goodbye to this amazing country. This experience has been more than I could ever imagine. Our morning started quite early, as we had to leave our villa by 5:30 am. I did my best to pack up as by now my foot was quite sore and swollen. I was also incredibly anxious about making it on time. I can only assume all this made me quite the annoying travel companion. Nevertheless, Terri, Emily, John, Eric, and I piled into the van and made the three-hour drive to the Sydney airport. After some difficulty at check in and security, we made it to our gate with 45 minutes to spare and we were ready to board. I have to say we got pretty lucky with both timing and seating. Our flight was relatively empty, which meant that each of our rows had an empty seat in the middle and I was able to stretch myself out. I took about a 5-hour nap and watched two movies: Into The Woods and This Is Where I Leave You. The first was not as good as I suspected; the second was better. The flight felt much shorter than when we flew into AU so we landed in LA sooner than I expected. Let’s just side note that I left AU at 11:05 am Friday morning and landed in the US at 7:50 am Friday morning. It was a bit of a mind melt. Once in LA we had to go through customs two more times, collect our luggage, and then recheck it. I was happy just to sit down by the time we made it to our gate, even if we did still have an hour layover. The flight from LA to Minneapolis was not as fun (we were packed in) but did involve more sleep. By the time we got to the MSP airport, my foot was throbbing and our gate was a good 50-minute walk on the other side of the airport. Luckily, I was able to catch a ride on a service cart and was able to grab some food and stretch out during our 2-hour layover. Having already done a 14-hour flight and a 4-hour flight, the 1-hour flight into Flint was a breeze. I was back in the mitten before I knew it. As sad as I am that it's all over, I was thrilled to see my fiancé waiting for my outside the airport, ready to take me home.