Thursday, October 04, 2007

Flight to America

Since my last post, we'd been busy preparing for our sudden departure from Italy and, afterwards, dealing with all of the new things which come with settling in California.

Pino, Angela's brother, drove us to the airport. It was a rainy, tearful and tense Tuesday morning, no one (including ourselves) completely at ease with our decision to leave what had become a comfortable life in Putignano. I had planned to say so many things to Angela's family, rehearsing and perfecting sentiments in Italian in my head the night before, but didn't end up saying anything at all. It's difficult to say much facing a line of sobbing family members without falling in line myself.

At the airport, we scarfed down a couple pieces of cardboard airport pizza, grabbed our bags and panini for the plane, dashed for our flight, landed in Milan after about two hours, took a short cab ride to our hotel and finally relaxed. Everything had gone smoothly and, if everything would have gone as smoothly on the the next day, we wouldn't have had anything to complain about.

Vito and Moms after SeafoodSilvia, who lives in Milan, came to our little hotel and visited with us for about an hour before ducking out to make a dinner date. She was a breath of fresh air in what had become a depressing departure, excited about our future and wonderfully positive about our new beginning. After Silvia left us, the three of us headed out to meet Nicholas for dinner. We met him at a small Sicilian restaurant and enjoyed a fabulous seafood meal. A great uplifting end to this first leg of our journey.

The next morning, after a decent breakfast of yogurt, cornetti and cappuccino in the hotel lobby café, we cabbed back to the airport and checked our luggage with some difficulty. As we needed our stroller to more easily maintain Vito, we had to make special arrangements for its transport, but it seemed to take a long time. Nonetheless, we made our flight in plenty of time and boarded the plane destined for London without further difficulty, only giving up the stroller right before climbing the portable stairway into the plane. We were about one hour behind schedule.

We were worried that we wouldn't have time to catch our connecting flight in London, but we discovered that we had a bigger problem once we arrived there. Unfortunately, when we landed in London, our stroller, which was a combination stroller/car seat was not waiting for us. No one in London could help us. We learned that, if the stroller wasn't in San Francisco, our final destination, we could file a complaint there! Not only did we have to carry Vito to the next flight all the way across Heathrow Airpoirt (Angela actually carried Vito, while I carried our backpack, computer and the large carry-on bag we had brought) but, when we would arrive in San Francisco, we wouldn't have a car seat for Vito and didn't know if we would be able to get one at the airport.

Vito on the PlaneLuckily, Angela's cellphone worked in London and, before taking off, I called my parents, who were coming to get us at the airport in San Francisco, and told them the story. They agreed to grab a car seat just in case.

We landed in San Francisco at rush hour on Wednesday evening California time but, for our biological clocks, it was really Thursday morning at about 3AM. Unhappily, our stroller was not waiting for us, nor did it appear on the baggage carousel. We filed a complaint for the missing luggage as we had been advised and then, despite the fact that my parents were waiting for us with a car seat, we could not leave without an attendant checking to make sure we had car seat waiting for us. My parents were waiting at the gate, they had a car seat, and soon we were home and safely asleep.

After a couple days, the stroller arrived, and even though an integral piece needed to attach the car seat to the stroller had broken off, the stroller was functional.

Since then, we've been busy almost every day with various activities. All of us have acclimated, although Vito seems to have come down with a cold and has been a little crabby all day today. Anyway, you're all caught up with our drama. We're fully open to and accepting positive vibes, prayers, mojo and any other magic you might be able to send our way so don't hesitate.

1 comment:

MichiMik said...

Ciao Bob and Angela and Vito,

Finally you moved to the States…I wish you a better luck for everything despite understanding the sadness in leaving a sunny, comfortable and relaxed life in Putignano …

I was very touched in thinking of you guys at the airport saying “ciao” to Angela’s family … but that is the way it goes, isn’t it?

I love the picture of Angela and Vito … she looks tired and sad but he looks lovely, unaware of what is going on …

Despite being Sunday morning I am at work … so, I have to finish this here…

Good luck my friends and hope to see you soon!!!
Ciao!
Marianna