Monday, December 29, 2008

Asia-bound

It was a rather epic journey getting Erin and her compatriots dispatched to Bangkok -- three days of driving back and forth over various mountain passes and through various snowstorms -- but at 10:30 last night I took this photo and then left them to their own devices in the International Departures area of the Vancouver International Airport. I was nice and dropped at the door before parking so that they wouldn't have to wear their sandals and light clothes through Vancouver's almost record snowfall to get within the airport terminal.

We'd been up since 6 a.m., driven 9 hours, had dinner and hung out for 4 hours and then headed to the airport. They checked in at 10 pm for an flight leaving at 2 am which would last 15 hours, a 2-hour layover in Hong Kong and a final 2-hour hop that will land them in Bangkok at about 10 in the morning local time the day afterwards. A very long journey!

They'll be in Bangkok on New Year's Eve recovering from jet lag, acclimatizing to the tropical weather and enjoying the culture shock, before heading up north in Thailand and on into Laos. Erin will have her 15th birthday there. They'll spend time in Burma, very much off the beaten track (excellent article here) and eventually end up back in Bangkok.

I've never used a passport myself and am suffering rather extreme travel envy after spending all yesterday in a minivan with five excited travellers!

7 comments:

  1. How completely exciting (and perhaps a bit terrifying)! I'll be thinking of her and wishing her safe travels.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Wishing your daughter safe travels and you peace of mind while she is away. Such an exciting adventure.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Oh, how exciting for her! Wishing her a fun, safe adventure!

    ReplyDelete
  4. Never used a passport??? Woah! That is sooo bizarre..... I do realise that you can have travelled extensively in 2 countries without a passport, but still. My kids get passports just as soon as I can extract birth certificates from the authorities, and two have had airtickets booked before they had names or a birth date to put on them. :)

    ReplyDelete
  5. Beccy, I have travelled a ton in both Canada and the US, far more than most North Americans ever imagine, but also in England, Scotland and Wales as well as Mexico. Because I was born in England I have dual citizenship and could enter, for a while, with only a birth certificate. And Mexico ... I camped and lived in Mexico back in 1989/90 with nothing more required than a drivers' license.

    But since undertaking rural medical practice 16 years ago it's been next to impossible to travel internationally. Chuck can rarely get more than 1-2 weeks off, and just driving to an airport takes us a couple of days on both ends.

    Plus he rarely knows more than a couple of weeks in advance whether he's actually going to be able to find a locum and be able to actually take the time. We don't want to book tickets and then discover that we can't go. This past fall, for example, he never did get a locum, so we had to scale our planned 3 weeks of holidays back to 6 days at the very last minute. The year before we didn't get holidays away at all. The year before we got a week.

    We're really looking forward to early retirement :-)

    ReplyDelete
  6. Thanks for the clarification, you didn't strike me as someone who hadn't travelled. Interesting about the travelling on a birth cert thing. I also have dual citizenship, but never travelled on a birth cert, just on my mom's passport, and then from age 12 on my own.

    Early retirement sounds good: not being able to book months in advance is hopeless for international travel. Our June/July trip is already booked and paid for, and we are feeling we are behind a bit in that we haven't booked our accommodation yet. At least one of your kids is getting to do the international travel thing before you do retire. It's such a pity that you can't do opportunities like Turin/Melbourne etc.

    ReplyDelete
  7. How exciting! I hope Erin has a great trip.

    ReplyDelete

This blog is moving to archive-only status. Please consider posting comments instead at the active version of the blog at nurturedbylove.ca/blog

Note: only a member of this blog may post a comment.