Letter: PDX–>MEX–>LIM

Long flights are not exactly my thing, especially the overnight red-eye variety. In a way, it was nice to leave at 11:30pm. I had an extra day to fine tune the never ending packing and clean up the house. Carmen spent the day with a good friend, Cooper rode his bike, and Charlie ran around with the neighbors. I even played tennis. We went out for our “last American meal” and got milkshakes for dessert. It was a pretty fun day. Jeff had to work, but when he got home we all just chilled out and enjoyed the last few hours with Juno in our house.

Speaking of our house. It would be one thing to just pack up and go for four months. But since we will have house sitters staying with Juno we had to get the house ready for them. Basically, I moved everything from the master bedroom up into an extra closet in Carmen’s room. Our closet and drawers are now totally empty. Our photos are put away. Our medicine cabinet has been stored. I took four giant bags to Goodwill and threw away another four bags. It kind of felt like moving again. Good to purge and organize, but also added another layer to the preparations.

IMG_5569Jeff drove us to the airport and lugged our four gigantic bags to check-in. The first one weighed in at 49.9 lbs and thankfully the rest were under 50 lbs. All said and done I’m pretty impressed that we made it with only four bags for four months. In addition to all of our clothes, the luggage contains bike helmets, a tent, four pairs of bulky hiking boots, some miscellaneous medical gear, our own personal pharmacy, a couple of mosquito nets, clothes for winter, summer, rain, jungle, and backpacking. I even crammed two full size backpacking backpacks into one of the bags. Oh, and five tennis rackets, of course. I’m sure I’ve forgotten something.

We said goodbye to Jeff, goodbye to Portland, and took the requisite PDX carpet shoe picture. The flight to Mexico City started off with excitement about the personal TV screens on each chair back. Before they turned into total zombies I made the kids unplug and try to get some sleep. There were varying levels of success in that endeavor. I forgot how brutal redeye flight are. When we arrived to Mexico City we were bleary eyed and hangry (hungry/angry). We were so early for our next flight that we had no gate assignment. Cooper and Charlie pulled up a bit of Mexico City airport floor and fell asleep while I fretted over what diseases they would contract from said floor. Our gate was finally announced and we at least had chairs to sit on.

Kids were delighted to find personal TVs on each seat back again and we binged watched bad TV and movies all the way to Lima. Worst part of the trip? The hour and a half taxi ride in the slowest, worst Lima traffic I can remember. Brutal. Best part of the trip? Arriving to Marta’s house, seeing the cousins trickle in over the course of the evening, drinking a cold beer, and going to bed.

Can’t believe we made it. Next stop: BEACH. Just a little excited about that.

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