There are two things that must be accomplished in Almaty before I am free to come home. First, Noah must be cleared by a doctor at the SOS international clinic. This was DONE yesterday! Second, Noah and I must be cleared through the US Embassy. Our passports must be in order and Noah must also have a VISA allowing him into the US. He is not a US citizen until he steps on US soil. He will then have dual citizenship … Kazakhstan and the US.
Our appointment with the Embassy is Monday, the 26th at 3:30 p.m.
Today, we were taken to a Lufthansa Airlines office and we purchased our tickets home! Yippeeeeeeeee! We leave Almaty Tuesday, the 27th at 4:05 a.m. and arrive in Frankfurt, Germany at 6:30 a.m. (4 hour time change so it’s a 6 ½ hour flight). We have a 4 hour layover and depart Frankfurt at 10:25 a.m. (8 hour flight) and ARRIVE IN ATLANTA AT 2:50 P.M. Can you believe it? I am sooooooooo excited!!
After purchasing our plane tickets, we were driven into the mountains of Almaty to see the scenery. I've included a few pictures. In one picture you will see me and our interpreter, Kate. In another, I included a picture of me and Sam. Sam is our driver. I have realized that Almaty is a GREAT city. It used to be the capital of Kazakhstan, but recently the capital was moved to Astana … a more central city to the entire country. My understanding as to the reason of the change is that the city of Almaty is too close to the border of China and in case of war, it would be too vulnerable. Almaty is a bustling city with beautiful buildings, all the best retail stores, and the people seem very professional and quite hip.
Today, we made reservations for Thanksgiving night at the Intercontinental Hotel Restaurant. It is a gorgeous hotel and the dining room is spectacular. They are going to be serving turkey and dressing, etc. Our “crew” is looking forward to celebrating Thanksgiving together with our children …and of course having some great American food!
I have to admit that this last week has been tough for me and I have found myself completely exhausted and homesick. Shannon and Derick call it being tired down to their cells … the cellular level! I feel better knowing it’s not just me … but I still feel like I’m on my last wobbly leg. But now I have plane tickets in hand and my handsome boy and me and my wobbly leg are coming home soon!! (smile)