Starting out on Tuesday morning Mr. P took me to Danbury, an hour's drive from the P house, to a Connecticut Limo pick-up site. Now, don’t get excited. It wasn’t actually a limo. What it is is a eleven passenger van that, for $60 one-way, takes you straight to your New York Airport terminal. My fellow passengers were made up of three businessmen, a cowgirl, and an Indian grandma(An India Indian, not the other kind), plus the also very Indian driver, who I could hardly understand. We made the two hour drive in silence, bouncing and hurtling along the road.
Mr. A at the Moscow Airport Departures.
I had a three hour wait at JFK before I met up with the Ds, and from there we had another three hours to departure. The flight from JFK to Moscow was eight hours long. I find it extremely hard, to the point of being impossible, to sleep in an airplane. With that many hours awake, plus the the hours time difference, everyone was tired by the time we reached Moscow. It took us a while to get through the Moscow airport because we had to get our luggage(all 17 suitcases, total) and re-check it. The arrival gate where we came out was huge, empty and very clean, but the departures area was small and packed with people. It was raining when we arrived and in Moscow we had to take a bus out to the airplane and then drag ourselves and our luggage up the stairs and inside, and then back down the stairs, on the bus and out the door in St. P. I'm rather sore from carrying my over-loaded back pack and helping wrestle the D luggage in out and everywhere! The flight to St. P was about an hour long, and almost everyone slept through that. On the way home we have an eleven hour layover in Moscow, before our eight hour trip back to JFK and my trip back though Minneapolis to Omaha. I don't think I'm being overly pessimistic when I say it's going to be a nightmare of sleepless continuum.
The view from the girls' room window
We were met at the St. P airport, which seemed rather small, and taken by a rented shuttle to the P apartment. The Ps are very kind, friendly Texans, and we'll be staying with the for most of our time in Russia. Their apartment is a Victorian-era, or for them, late Tsarist era building. It's on the second floor between a cafe and a flower shop, and very centrally located. The most notable part of the apartment is that all the ceilings are very high, say, fifteen feet. The windows overlooking the street are also huge, at least six or seven feet tall, with double opening panes of glass.
The girls' room boasts, among other things, one large window and a bunny who lives in the corner. I got the bottom bunk; there are currently five ladies staying here, but once the other two arrive the little girls will probably move to a different bedroom. We slept fairly well from 10pm(here) to 10am(here) and survived the day without a nap. We walked to the park and had guests to dinner. Tomorrow, Friday, we'll visit friends of the D's for dinner and then Saturday we'll head out for a ten day trip to Vyborg.