Saturday, July 12, 2014

Redding, USA (July 2014)

Made by Theta: Theta's Art
Yay! I have made it to my final destination! Once I got off the plane, my grandmother was right there and, yay, etc. We went to the help desk and asked about my luggage, and the very nice guy helped us out and said they would be on the look out, and we should get it eventually. So it was with some great relief we go in the car to go home. However, because I had no clothes we had to stop on the way to get some. We did that, and made it back. A few days later my luggage arrived, and that was that!!!

I hope you enjoyed the tale of my trip, hopefully it wasn't too dry. Please leave a comment about what you think, and next week I will be back with a new story!

Friday, July 11, 2014

San Francisco, USA (Airport; July 5, 2014)

Made by Theta: Theta's Art
Welp, I made it to the San Francisco airport, and have been there for some time. Obviously, I missed my flight to Redding. To make it worse, all the flights to Redding for the 5th (late this day) were full, so I had the option to fly standby. So, I called the parents to ask them about it, and they said that was a very bad idea. With more tears we finally got it worked out and I was going to fly to Chico on the 5th. I am going to fly to Chico at 11:30AM. Once I get there I will need to make a claim for my luggage so I get it back. Hopefully it will not be an issue, but as of my trip right now, it will be. :| At least then, I will be with my grandma! :D It was super chilly in this airport, I'm so glad I had my brother's jacket. It is super comfortable!!! Although, I really smell funny. You don't wear the same clothes for day without picking up some scents! For breakfast (around 5AM) I had the most delicious brie and pastrami sandwich from an Italian pastry shop in the South food court in the airport. The internet here is free, and fast! The only drawback is that you have to reconnect every 2 hours. Anyway, during the wait until 9, when I could head towards my gate, I just finished season 8 of The Office, it was okay I guess. other than that, it was really boring. I did not sleep because I thought that would be weird. :) Getting through the security to the gate was super easy and efficient. Finding the gate was just as easy. So, I sat at the gate, read a book (one by Mercedes Lackey). The plane arrived and left on time without any problems. The plane a a tiny prop plane, and I love those. They are really comfortable. We took off into the air and whoosh! We were off!

Thursday, July 10, 2014

Toronto, Canada (Airport; July 4, 2014)

Made by Theta: Theta's Art
Oh Boy, I made it to the Toronto airport. Apparently, even though this is Canada, not the US, you go through US customs in Canada. So, I only had an hour and thirty minutes until my plane left Toronto for San Francisco and I had to go through customs. Arriving, I had the super unpleasant surprise of the strangest customs I have ever seen. You were supposed to scan your boarding pass at a station, then wait for your name to appear on the board. First of all, I had to go to a separate counter instead of just scanning my pass. It appeared that my luggage had not come off the airplane yet, but the lady told me not to worry and just wait until my name came up on the board. Then, I waited a very long time, and my plane had started to board, I asked a lady what I was supposed to do, as I didn't want to miss my plane. She took me to a baggage something-or-other, and it turned out my bags were missing, which is why my name had not come on the board. So that was just great. My bags were missing, and I was in danger of missing my flight. I got rushed to the front of the customs line, and actually going through customs was easy and did not take up any time. So, I thought I would be fine. But, noooo. There was a security line afterwards. A SECURITY line!!! Why on earth would there be a security line right after customs?? We just came off a stupid airplane. My only thought is that some people had not gone through a security line yet. So, anyway, the line there was huge, and even if your plane left in less than fifteen minutes you couldn't go through quickly. Which, honestly, fair enough. Then, as it turned out, I was chosen for the extra security check. Which was just great. At this point I resigned myself to missing my flight. But, not having missing one before, I did not want that to happen. So I got all patted down and got all my bags checked, etc. Then I rushed to the gate, not even tying my shoes. But it was to no avail. I missed the plane by 2 minutes. It was still in the spot, but the boarding thingy had ben taken off, so there was no way to get one the plane. I started to cry at this point, it was just too much. But the lady and guy were super nice. They told me that there was another flight to San Francisco 2 hours later, and they could book me on that flight. So they did, but it turned out the Redding flight left the same time as my flight arrived and that one was the last one out. The next one was at 12 the next day. However, they could not take care of that for me, they could do it once I reached San Francisco. So I went to that gate, called my parents, and promptly burst into tears. :| In my defense, the amount of sleep I had gotten was minuscule over the past 30 hours. So after I let everyone know what happened, I was able to wait for the plane. We left the airport right on time, so I settled in for the flight, and hoped everything would work out just fine.

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Istanbul, Turkey (Airport; July 4, 2014)

Made by Theta: Theta's Art
As right now, nothing too exciting had happened on my trip. I had gotten very little sleep, having left for the Dammam Airport at 10:30 PM. Too early to sleep beforehand, too late to not to be tired. I think I got around an hour's sleep throughout the flight (It was 4 hours). Awesomely enough, there wasn't anyone in the middle seat. Just the guy on the aisle and me at the window! Other than that the plane was pretty full. They fed us at 3 AM (our flight had left at 1:55 AM) due to Ramadan. That time was really too early to eat breakfast, but I was surprisingly hungry. Once I got off the airplane, it was super confusing. There were crowds of people, and no distinctive way to go. I did not have my boarding pass, and no one told me where to obtain it. So, greatly confused, I did the thing that any reasonable person would do. When in doubt, join the big line. Even if you don't know where it goes. It turned out that it was the security line (why would you need to go through a security line right off the plane, I have no idea. You just got through a security line!!!!) and in order to go through security you needed your boarding pass. So I asked a security advisor guy (as he seemed to know what was up) what to do, and as it turned out, I had to leave that line and go the Air Canada desk. So I thanked him and left the line. The thing about that desk is that it was not obvious that it was Air Canada. It was in combination with multiple airlines, and it looked like it was part of Turkish Airlines. You had to look a the tiny sign that had all the airlines on it. Anyway, after I go into the correct line (it was super short) I got to the airline desk. Getting the pass was no issue, and I was soon on my way back to the security line. When I got back in it is was shorter, and without any more ado, I got through security. Then I bought some turkish delight, (YUM!! Completely recommend buying some if you are passing through Turkey; nobody makes it like the Turkish!) and got some food. Once I settled down at the food court, I tried the internet. As it turned out, the internet is not free in the Istanbul airport, so just a heads up. I was a little astonished, as I thought it would be free, but no biggie. :D It was no trouble for me to enter the gate, but apparently, if you are not Canadian or American, and have a passport other than those two, they really put you through the twenty questions. I was a little shocked, because I thought you usually got questioned like that at customs, and not to enter the Air Canada gate in the Istanbul airport, who knew? I waited at the gate, got on the plane, and settled in for the longest leg of my journey, 11 hours. I was super ecstatic, because like the last flight, there was no one in the middle seat! I had no idea that I going to have any trouble, because as of that moment, everything had gone very smoothly. 

Flying is Fun (Not)

Made by Theta: Theta's Art
As a few of you may know, I have recently moved from Saudi Arabia to California. The trip I had to make was not one of fun and joy. I had to make several flights through a couple of different countries. Because it was a very exciting trip, I thought I would share it with you guys. So, over the next 3 or 4 days I will have a "mini-series" documenting my trip. I hope you enjoy it, and maybe learn something too! :D 

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

The Dark Side of the Moon

       Joe was very scared. All he had wanted to do was to go out quickly and fix the broken pipe. But it had not been that simple. There was more than one pipe busted, so it took him 3 hours instead of 1. He glanced down at the oxygen meter. It was rapidly going red. He had about 15 minutes to get back to the base, but was stuck between two boulders. His radio had gone out, and there was no way to get back to the base.
       Blaise was upset. He had not seen Joe since he left. He was Joe's partner, but Joe insisted that this particular project was only going to take an hour, so no help was necessary. But now that Joe had been gone for too long, he was cursing himself. Joe should never have gone by himself. Blaise paced the entrance to the airlock.
Made by Theta: Theta's Art
      Joe was now panicking. He was in no hurry to die, but it appeared it was going to happen sooner rather than later. He reconciled himself to his fate and sighed. This was life. As soon as you met a nice girl you would like to marry, you were handed your life back to you on a plate. Joe leaned against a boulder. Ah yes, the girl. He contemplated about her. Her name was Anna Marie. He had met her on the Underground while travelling back from work. She had not minded that he was wearing worker's clothes, and instead of snubbing him like everyone else, she smiled and chatted with him. That had lead to a nice dinner with coffee afterwards. He sighed and thought to himself, "That relationship had so much potential, but now there is nothing. But at least I was able to spend my last night on this moon happy as a... a... worker on break!" (Being from the Moon, Joe did not have a good comparison...)
       Meanwhile, Blaise had found an unused moon car and suit. He had established a weak signal from Joe’s radio. Even though it wasn’t working for Joe, the radio’s had a built in weak distress signal. Blaise followed it out to where Joe was. Or rather, where he should have been. Because the radio wasn’t working, Joe had left it near the pipe he originally was supposed to fix. Blaise snarled with anger. That was just like Joe, to forget that the radio had a built in distress signal. Blaise got out of the moon car and went over to the pipe. It had been fixed. Perplexed, Blaise glanced around. Nothing. He looked again, slower this time. Nothing… Oh wait! There was a flash of red coming between two rocks. Blaise quickly went over there. There was Joe!
       Blaise reached down to check if Joe was ok. He shook him a little bit. Joe did not move at all. Trembling a little, Blaise checked his life support system. The oxygen was yellow, there was hardly any left. Blaise lifted up Joe’s head. His face was tinged blue Restraining his tears, Blaise picked Joe up and put him in the car and hurried back to the base.

       In the hospital, Joe woke up to Anna Marie next to him.