So as everyone probably already knows, I am studying abroad this spring in Malaysia! I know, I can't believe it either. But I am SO excited, and this will be SO good for me! I may even learn how to boil some water! (That's for Daddy.)
Now, I'm not much of the "journaler" type, but I'm gonna try and do a blog while I'm abroad. If the rest of the days are as funny (not at first) as today started, this will be quite an entertaining blog. So, I hope y'all enjoy!
Now, where to begin...
Do NOT get me started. First off... BAD decision to wait until the night before to put things in suitcases. Imagine ME (borderline hoarder) trying to fit 5 months worth of clothes and necessities into 2 suitcases, including about 15 t-shirts....Not 25, Mama. :P However, I won't go into any more details of the night. Just ask Anna if you really want to know as she heard it all while she was trying to sleep. Poor sister.
The day of departure.
It started off with packing the car leaving the house at 10:15 AM (45 min past planned time...of course) and going to visit Granmama and Grady. After the stressful night before, they had some great words of wisdom. Grady said, "I am sending Him (pointing above) with you to Malaysia, and I know he'll look out for you." That was really all I needed to hear, actually. Then Grandmama gave me only about 5 hugs bye before we were off to Charlotte! Now of course, since Queen's is on the way to the airport, I had to stop by to say some final good-byes. And then since one of my favorite restaurants, Bad Daddy's, is down the street from Queen's, of course we had to get my last U.S. lunch there. I recommend for any Charlotte visitors by the way. Then we were off to the airport!
Daddy dropped Mama and me off at the door with my suitcases and went to park. Now, why he left two blondes together to check in, I don't know. He was there after a few minutes thank goodness. We walked up to the counter to check in and the check-in ladies or whatever they're called weren't the nicest of the bunch if I must say so myself. She looked at me and said, "Driver's license, passport, and visa." Visa is the key word here... When preparing to go abroad, we were informed that I did not have to have a Visa to go to Malaysia. It was probably the only 1 of about 130 places that didn't require one, so we triple checked to make sure. After conversing with the lady and some urgent phone calls (and watery eyes), we figured it all out... I think. I'm still not there yet, so knock on wood. Then after that stressful moment, it was time to weigh my suit cases. If there was a sound insert, the classic Jaw's movie sound would go hear. AND of course, my bags were 45 and 63 pounds. The limit was 50. My dearest friend Jordan who was at the airport to send me off came to the rescue! Not only did she have an extra suitcase (which I didn't end up needing after all) and an "old" friend's draw string bag, she eased the tension to say the least. As I was wearing a maxi dress she let me borrow for the trip, this came by pursuing to tell me I had on HER dress backwards. Daddy said, "I thought it being longer in the front then the back was the new style!" This brought loads of laughter, which was HIGHLY needed. After a lot of switching around and getting rid of a couple things, the bags ended up weighing 50 and 50.1 pounds. Praise the Lord!
After saying goodbyes to Jordan, Mama and Daddy walked me to the security line and this was where we separated. As I walked around the windy line, without my parents, I said, "Woah, this is weird." And that's when it hit me. That I was leaving...by myself. I still don't think it's hit me that I'll be in Malaysia of all places, but that time is coming near. I can feel it. Then I met my fellow traveling mate and Queen's friend Meredith at the boarding gate.
Now, as the boarding time was 4:35 PM, I sat down at about 4:00 PM and chatted with Meredith. As we chatted and chatted some more, Meredith said, "It's so empty around here..." This was 4:25 that we noticed this and realized something was wrong. We then discovered we were at the WRONG gate. So we rushed over to our correct gate, which was luckily 2 gates over and we were JUST in time before they closed it. Now, how crazy would that have been...to miss our first flight. But we made it, and now we're in LA!
After what I thought felt like painfully long flight (only 5 hours), we grabbed our last U.S. dinner at the California Pizza Kitchen here in the airport. Now we have a 5 hour layover until we board a plane to Hong Kong. I am NOT looking forward to this as this flight will be 15 hours. 15 HOURS!?! I'm planning to sleep though since excluding the time difference, it will be 3AM to my body. But this is the first and last U.S. blog before I'm in Malaysia! So everyone keep me in their prayers and wish me luck!
P.S. I am SO proud of myself for this lengthy first blog ever of mine! Maybe because I'm bored, or I'm excited, or I just type a lot once I get going. Anyways, see ya in Malaysia! :)