God is so good. We left my parents’ house around 9am on Sunday morning. We arrived at the Lehmans’ house around 10.30am on Tuesday morning… Altogether almost 40hours spent travelling. And though we were all in serious need of a shower, we could still smile at the end of it.
Our first flight was from Johannesburg to Dubai. The flight was pretty empty, so a very sweet air hostess found two rows for our family – each kid got a window seat and we had three seats between two people, which meant more comfort. Dubai’s airport is HUGE. No, really. Just the bus ride from our plane to the next terminal took 40 minutes! We all got to sleep on the next flight, to Hong Kong. At Hong Kong we checked that our bags had been booked through all the way, and paid for excess baggage (the allowance for the last two Air Niugini flights was smaller than the first two with Emirates). We found out that the bags needed to be found and re-tagged because they were only booked to Port Moresby and not all the way through to Madang. It took the poor ground crew ages to find all our bags – after waiting three hours, we decided to go through from arrivals to departures, so that we would not miss our flight. The last bag was found just before we started boarding, we had already made peace with the fact that it would only be found after we left… We had another restful flight – the kids watched one more movie, and then we all slept. This flight was delayed, which meant a rush at Port Moresby. We found a very friendly group of people waiting, helping us (and other transferring passengers) locate all our bags and walking with us through customs to check in our big bags again. It was our first time on a smaller plane, and we all enjoyed it!
At Madang’s tiny airport (it was a day of extremes!) Jeremy was waiting with his truck. And he brought with him one of our favourite people in the world, Amelia! What a sweet reunion!
We are thankful to God that He provided safe travels for us. Aside from me having some nasty headaches on descent (which has happened to me before), and the luggage issues (which were solved) we had no hick-ups. And now we move on to the next phase! Language and culture acquisition in Madang.