After driving for a couple of days from Chicago to New York, it was time to fly for a couple of days from JFK to Johannesburg.
Most of our time in the gate area and as we boarded the plane was spent searching for Indie on the tarmac. Was she on the plane already? Was it cool in cargo? We asked a couple of flight attendants to check for us, and when we got a visit from a copilot we knew it was time to settle down.
Once airborne, the flight was pretty smooth. Granted, 15 hours doesn’t get killed without a fight, but the actual “in the air” part was good. We watched a lot of movies. I did not sleep. At all.
It was the “on the ground” segment of the journey that did not follow the plan.
First, there was a mixup with our scheduled transportation from the airport to Pretoria. After a bit of a wait and several calls for help, a shuttle was arranged. In the meantime, we knew Indie had been sent to the cargo facility and was sitting in the warehouse waiting for us. It was going on 22 hours for her in that crate and we were getting concerned.
Jenny took a taxi to the cargo warehouse while I waited with several hundred pounds of luggage for the shuttle to arrive. When we reached the cargo area, Jenny was nowhere to be found. It took about 15 minutes to track her down in that labyrinth, and another hour and a half to rescue Indie from that purgatory.
A very happy, but very exhausted, Indie was released to us and proceeded to release herself on South African soil. It was good to be free. And reunited.
About half an hour later, we were at our guest house in the Pretoria suburb of…Brooklyn. We had just flown from Queens to, yes, Brooklyn. All in all, it took about 24 hours to get from Queens to Brooklyn. (Our NYC friends may not think that so unusual, I suppose.)
Then, we slept.