The morning view from our bedroom window.
Three flights and 32 hours after rolling into the Chattanooga airport, we’ve arrived in our new home.
Overall the travel was relatively smooth, although I doubt this marathon day will ever make into onto anyone’s list of favorite things. It speaks to the exhaustion (mentally and emotionally from farewells, and physically from moving and travels) with which we entered the day as Michael and I both sank into our plane seats with a sense of sadness tinged with relief knowing there was nothing left to wrap up in Chattanooga.
-Thumbs up: exit aisle seating for the 13-hour flight.
-Thumbs up: the new terminal for international arrival.
-Thumbs down: forgetting how to say “french fries” in Mandarin at the 24-hour McDonald’s (of course) where we grabbed a midnight snack after disembarking.
-Thumbs down: trying to sleep in upright chairs during our nine-hour, overnight layover in the capital airport as workers renovated (imagine all the construction noises that come along with that) our terminal.
-Thumbs up: the enterprising airport worker who found us (trying to) sleep at 2.30 AM and took us to a closed restaurant where we could sprawl out and sleep on the unused booth seating. Surprisingly comfortable, in case you ever need to do the same.
-Thumbs up: paying the same rate for this “hotel in a restaurant” as the nationals snoring in the booths alongside us.
-Thumbs down: jet lag.
Right now we’re working on beginning the settling in process–our apartment looks as if a bomb recently exploded, leaving assorted shoes, clothes, and household items scattered about. Everything will get done–one day–all in good time.
1. Laughter is the best medicine.
2. A picture is worth a thousand words.
This is how we spent our last day in the States.
Could we improve on this in any way, I ask? I think not.
(I hate this picture is so small but I can’t say how loved we felt because of this! Thank you friends!)
During last week’s tour of the SouthEast, we were able to stop in the loveliest village on the Plains and visit with some dear friends. Anna and Kristel lived in Asia the first year I was there and they are some of my favorite people in the world. They are precious girls and it was such a blessing for all of us to reunite!
Bonus: we got to meet one of the cutest little guys I’ve ever seen. Baby Henry (Anna’s first child!) is only two months old but he has more hair than many two-year-old toddlers I’ve seen.
Love this picture! Michael looks perplexed. Henry looks terrified. Hank (also known as the dad) thinks the whole thing is hilarious.
We made a quick day-trip to Atlanta yesterday to see (not so) little sister Mary Emily’s new life and grown-up apartment and to enjoy one of our favorite summertime activities: Braves baseball. It was a hot evening but mid-game showers cooled things down, and the Bravos pulled out a come-from-behind, bottom-of-the-9th 4-3 win over the LA Dodgers. I loved it because the Braves usually make it a point of coming up with a loss whenever I attend. Last night’s game was definitely the best I’ve ever seen in person. Hurray for holding onto the Eastern Division lead!
With Mary Emily in our slightly illegal seats–we talked a nice Braves attendant named Wanda into helping us upgrade (although as you can see, we were still high above and far from the action).
Some friends from our earlier time in East Asia were able to join us for the game. Most–not all–were happy with the outcome. (Sorry, D.)
Michael’s little brother, Mark got married this weekend in Oxford, MS (both he and his new wife Holley are Ole Miss grads). More wedding pictures to come when I get them, but for now here are a few from the rehearsal on Friday night.
Gregory boys + spouses: Matt and Suzanne; Holley and Mark; me and Michael.
With Suzanne–I have been so thankful to live near her and her wonderful family for the last two years. This weekend we reminisced a lot about my wedding two years ago. It is amazing how much our friendship has grown since then and how much I have come to treasure her–as a friend and as someone else who understands the Gregory brothers. We will miss Suzanne, Matt, and their kids bunches!
Welcome to the Gregory fam, Holley!
Tickets: bought! (We leave Monday, Aug. 23rd!!!)
Packing: in process.
Good-byes: I don’t want to think about it.
Stress level: still rising.