This is the longest stretch of time that I have spent without writing since I began this blog but life has been spinning fast and furious for us in the last several weeks and I wanted to live it rather than document every single part of it.
Last time I checked in, I wrote in a sad, melancholic tone regretting the fact that we had to cancel our trip to Lebanon at the last minute. After a weekend away from home and realizing that the turmoil in that Middle Eastern country had soon died of, we ended up purchasing new tickets, repacking all bags and launching ourselves into the craziest adventure we had lived so far.
For my husband and I traveling with small children, one of them potty-training, was one of the hardest, most stressful things that we had to go through in our married life. Forget about any packing advice or what to do to entertain the little munchkins in the plane. The very basic thing of getting around the airports seemed to be the worse problem and one that all international travelers in our situation should really think through.
We had a backpack, a roller suitcase, a diaper bag, a car sit to be used in the planes,a double-stroller and two children to move around. All of that seemed doable within the US because we had the stroller with us but when we boarded the plane to Paris, we learned that we wouldn’t see it again until we arrived to Beirut. I made it through the huge Parisian airport because my husband was with me but I truly don’t know what I would have done if I was doing all of this by myself.
We arrived in Paris without having slept a single minute do to the fact that our one-year-old kept us awake the whole trip. We were tired and sleepy but still found the strength to carry both children and all of our belongings through the Parisian airport to find our new gate.
I think destiny thought that we needed a little more excitement during our trip because as the kids and I were waiting on a bench half awake while my husband had to get our tickets to Beirut reissued, two cops came running towards us asking us to move away from a neck pillow and a stuffed animal that were on that very same bench. They ended up asking everyone else around to evacuate the area, then they closed that whole section of the airport for the bomb squad to come and destroy the forgotten items because they were a potential threat. That definitely was enough of an adrenaline rush to wake us up and trust me, it made us move around the airport, like the gypsies we had become, with no problem.
After close to 27 hours traveling, we made it to Beirut but our luggage didn’t. Luckily, I planned for that to happen. After all, we flew in 3 planes and waited at 3 different airports. The chances for that to happen were pretty high but nothing matter anymore. We had enough diapers for 4 days, clothes for both the kids and us for several days, but most importantly, WE HAD ARRIVED TO MY HUSBAND’S COUNTRY! And I guess that is the one thing that makes us endure the hardships that traveling may bring to young families such as mine. It isn’t the “getting there” that matters, it is all about coming to people, meeting them for the first time… and all of this as part of a great surprise!
(After canceling the trip the first time, we didn’t want to get anybody’s hopes up in case we had to cancel one more time, so we decided to tell only my husband’s sister and her husband and give the biggest surprise of her life to my mother-in-law and the rest of the family).
We were in Beirut and ready to start one of the trips that has changed my husband, my self and us as a couple the most.
I will have to tell you all about my husband’s return to Lebanon in another post because it is just too exciting to write in conjunction with this one so look for the next post soon.