Monday, December 24, 2012

Heading Back Home

I am starting this blog post sitting next to my ultimate flight buddy, Amy Drummond '14, as we prepare to take off for Sydney. She and I were also proud members of bungalow 109, and strategically stayed up as long as we could last night to get a head start on beating our jet lag (still deciding if that was a good idea as I am really struggling to function right now). We began our last night with the ambitious goal of finishing all of the food in our bungalow, which went surprisingly well. For all those uninformed, Australian portions are far from filling for us monstrous American eaters, so late night snacking was a common activity throughout the trip. We then somehow got our hands on an Australian DVD and were able to watch a movie, which promptly put all of us to sleep. The next morning, our plan seemed counter productive as we nodded off during the hour long wait to check our bags for our Qantas flight, but after a chocolate topped cappuccino I was back in action! Amy Drummond and I have shared an arm rest in every flight thus far on our trip except for the first flight from BOS to LAX. I'd say we are ideal flight buddies, and we better be as we're in it for the long haul right now. 

I'm sad to be leaving Adelaide. It has the most incredible mix of landscape and wildlife I've ever seen: the coast is covered in exotic beaches with beautiful turquoise water, then 100 yards inland is remote farmland with bubbly rolling hills and sheep grazing all around, yet still flying over head are are the most beautiful flocks of vibrantly colored parrots. It was definitely a sight to see. 

We are safely down in Sydney where we have a very short wait until our next flight. I could not be more genuinely excited for the 15+ hour flight ahead of us. Qantas deserves the prize for best airline if there is one. The flight attendants are so nice and even gave a few of us some funky Qantas pjs to wear on the plane! The movie selection could not be better, although this time around I'm making it my goal to stay awake for more than half of every movie I attempt to watch.

What do you know - flight buddies with Amy again! My strategic sleep plan begins now. We figure if we sleep for the first 8 or so hours of the flight to Dallas and stay awake for the rest we'll be on NYC time. With my inflatable neck pillow ready to go (thanks mom) I'm off to sleep!

Yes, slept for 8 hours - great success, although I somehow always manage to miss the food options. I woke up snug on Amy's shoulder. She seemed less comfortable, but hey, what are teammates for? Movie choice number 1 was Lord of the Rings, my all time favorite and a perfect follow up to my completion of The Hobbit (highly recommended). 

Two movies later and a quick power nap and we were in Dallas! We said our goodbyes with sad, goggle tanned faces (great look by the way) and all went our separate ways home. I'm now with the Fairfield county crew (Courtney Bennett '13, Hana Bowers '13, Liz Calby '14, Anjalie Christy '14 and who better than Amy Drummond). Just a few more hours until I'm home for Christmas! My siblings did a less than thoughtful job of keeping in touch with me over my travels so I'm bringing them back Vegemite (I've decided it is a close second to coal after trying it). We're in the home stretch now! Happy holidays to everyone and thanks for following us on our trip Down Under!

Sydney Ellis '15