The day I left for Cairo, Egypt is the day I realized what the most horrifying words in the English Language are: Ladies and Gentlemen it appears……
We got to Nashville with time to spare. I was worried about taking Paul (David’s father) through security since he fell last year, shattered his shoulder and had metal plate and nine screws put in to hold everything together. Thankfully, even though we practically had to disrobe at the security check point we were put through the new body scanner. It was fun to watch the TSA guy try to explain to Paul why he had to put his hands in the air like he was the victim of a NY robbery. We were safely at our gate with sandwich and latte in hand one hour before our flight to New York was due to take off. David and I had stayed up late the last several nights getting our work done, packing, making sure details were ironed out so our trip would run as smoothly as a trip to a hectic foreign country with two 80-year-olds in tow can. Our flight boarded on time. David and his Mother made their potty break early so I wasn’t freaking out when they called our flight to board while those two ran off to make water. We boarded the plane without incident, got all of our flight safety instructions and headed down the tarmac. As the plane neared the end of the takeoff runway, David and I smiled at each other and said “here we go!” Then the plane came to a dead stop. The disembodied voice of the pilot came over the loud speaker and informed us very politely that our flight was going to be delayed by…..at this point I was thinking oh poop, surely not more than a few minutes, I mean we are already on the runway for goodness sake. If our pilot decided to go rogue he could just gun it and make a clean getaway…… an hour and a half (which eventually turned into over two hours).
From that moment on, our trip spiraled slowly out of control. We finally reached JFK airport one hour before our flight to Cairo was to leave. David and I flew like the wind through the maze that is JFK, alternately dragging and prodding our poor elderly parents as fast as they could go to the Egyptair check-in for our boarding passes only to find out that the only representative had left 15 minutes before we got there! With no boarding passes all we could do was listen in dismay as they called our flight over and over for boarding. After more than few choice words we regrouped and David remembered in all his research he had seen a flight that flew from JFK to Amman, Jordan and connect through to Cairo. I spent the next 20 hours sitting in airplanes, eating things in cellophane wrappers, using washrooms with no toilet paper and using caustic amounts of hand sanitizer instead of lounging by the pool and getting the massage I was so hoping for.
You would think once we got to the Cairo airport our troubles would be over, but no, not so much. After navigating the customs check in, getting entry visas and finally meeting our hired driver we found out our luggage that we checked at JFK was missing in action. We spent the next two hours using our driver as an interpreter, trying to figure out where to look, who to talk to, and eventually where to file a claim to get our luggage tracked!
Dave and I finally fell into the wonderfully luxurious bed at 3am. Somewhere around 4am I woke up because our white noise machine cut off. Okay, so there is this pesky voltage issue. Even if you have a converter, if your electronic device is not wired correctly it will literally burn up. Luckily, I am addicted to the white noise so I woke up immediately. Dave took the smoking device and put it in the bathtub, set his cell phone to white noise and off we went to lullaby land again. Tomorrow has to be a better day. The driver will pick us up at 10am for our tour of the Egyptian Museum. We are exhausted and emotionally drained but so ready to start our exciting tour of Egypt!