DUBAI - HOMEWARD BOUND – Nov. 22nd - 23rd, 2009
After breakfast we packed up and rearranged our luggage once again. We were off to Dubai airport bound for JFK. I couldn’t believe that almost three weeks had gone by since I left home. We said a quick good-bye to our driver and went to line up to go through customs. The airport was teeming with people. We got through customs rather quickly, but we had three hours to wait for our plane to take us home to the USA. Betsy and I took turns walking around the airport. I hate crowded places, so I just stretched my legs a couple of times. Our plane departed the terminal on time and we were off the ground before we knew it, resting comfortably in our seats. We flew back to New York on an Emirates Boeing 777 again and enjoyed the same good service. We now knew fourteen people from our tour group so the flight home was more interesting because we could get up and visit with them. The flight was an hour longer due to the jet stream, so it was a 12-½ hour flight back to JFK. I chose not to lay over in New York, as I had done on the way to Dubai, because I was anxious to get home. I wish now I had stayed in a hotel and left for Florida the next morning because my trip turned into a nightmare. I did get to visit with my nephew Tom, who works for U.S. Customs at Kennedy, so that was nice.
I was supposed to have a two-hour lay over in Atlanta before catching my flight to Jacksonville. I sat at JFK for five hours waiting for my airplane to come to the gate because it was delayed. The terminal I was in was under-going remodeling and the noise of the drills made me crazy. There was no place to get away from it. By the time I got to Atlanta I was very tired. You can imagine how I felt when I reached Atlanta, and found out my connection to Jacksonville was also delayed five hours. At that point I was beyond exhaustion. The airport was freezing and all I had was a light sweater. I was to tired to read, to tired to walk around the airport, and to tired to sleep. At one point I just cried from frustration and my body shook from being so cold. A ticket agent came over and wrapped a blanket around me. I don’t think I have ever been that tired in my life. When I finally got home to Jacksonville it was 4 a..m. November 23rd. I don’t even remember getting into bed. My husband was disappointed because he was so happy to see me, but I was so tired I wasn’t happy about anything.
I slept for ten hours. The next day I was back to myself and very happy to see my husband, my cats, and my home. I looked around at my beautiful home and my heart ached as I thought of “Slum City” and all those dirty little children with their big smiles. And so this ends my journal. God willing I will one day return to Africa as a missionary. That is something I have dreamed of since I was a small child. SO ENDS MY AFRICAN JOURNEY.