Monday, August 28, 2006

28 - August 2006

We're starting our journey in Hobart on the island of Tasmania, "where a minute lasts ninety seconds" according to a nice ol' couple from Adelaide with whom we had the pleasure of sharing an airport bench and some good conversation in Sydney earlier today.

We left our home at 3:15 PM on Saturday, August 26, 2006, and arrived in Hobart at 6:00 PM on Monday, August 28, 2006 (Australian day/time), after a lengthy day-and-a-half of real-time air travel (San Francisco to Los Angeles to Sydney to Hobart--with plenty of layovers in between). Security was tight in both countries, and Mike was extensively searched (including a visit to the "puffer" room) for chemical explosives at every checkpoint. Each time, he was "randomly chosen," but we didn't see a single other person searched at any of those sites...there must be something suspicious about that fellow!

After landing, we enjoyed a blessedly uneventful sunset drive in our rental car on the wrong--er, other--side of the road (once Mike stops hugging the left shoulder, we'll be golden!). We haven't had the chance to do any exploring yet, but at first glance, the place reminds us of Monterey Bay back home.

First impressions: in addition to the great accents (Mike says that's the one souvenir he wants to take home--can you imagine him with an Australian accent?!) and wicked wit, Australians are incredibly friendly, approachable, and relaxed. And they seem endlessly amused by us Americans (or perhaps just me, suggests Mike). The international Qantas crew mistook me for the wife of our seatmate, a guy on his way home to Sydney. The Aussie got an obvious kick out of the whole scenario as he quietly drank his Tooheys New (that's Australian for beer), snickered at our seemingly constant confusion, and kindly explained the contents of the random packages of goodies offered up by the flight attendants (so, really, a "socket" is a toothbrush? Or am I still all mixed up?!).

Note to anyone planning a similar trip: make sure you book the red-eye as we did--we're not at all jet-lagged! Of course, that's not to say we aren't going to sleep like babies tonight. We're all showered up and ready to do nothing at all, so it's fish and chips via room service for dinner tonight!

Snapshots of the day...

What's not to love about a man who carries more than his share of the luggage?

Just before touching down in Tasmania...

Who put the steering wheel over here?

The harbor view from our Hotel Grand Chancellor room...not too shabby a reward for all that air/airport time!


Dan said...

Yay! The Ikeda World Tour!

Happy you arrived safely and without Ikedarama-drama.

6:41 AM  
Kimbocita said...

Don't worry, Mike. I've been sent through the puffer, too. I think it's because of our menacing aura - once a White Tiger, always a White Tiger! Hai!

9:14 AM  
calitxmom said...

Love th pic of Mr. "Sexy Beast", er.. Mike... holding your handbag. That's a keeper!

10:18 AM  
Amson said...

I was happy to log on and see a post! So the red eye is the way to travel?!? I loved the pictures ...keep them coming!

6:28 PM  
Sonya said...

..for future reference....a toothbrush is a toothbrush is a toothbrush.....


So glad to see you both arrive safe and sound!!! Have a fantastic time!!


6:48 PM  
reednose said...

I share in the relief that you both arrived safely. Alisa, did you have to actually use one of those items we so charmingly call barf bags (what do the Aussie's call them?)over your day and a half of travel?
Enjoy the adventure and keep the pics coming!

9:00 PM  
reednose said...

Now that you've been randomly puffed Mike, your life with Alisa may never be the same.

Solution: Don't wear an "Impeach Bush" button on the way back and you'll avoid the "puffer" room.

9:20 PM  
NYMomLynne said...

This is so great Alisa!
Nice to have Sonya to translate for you from the US.

5:02 AM  
faywrayy said...

Looks like a good start to a fantastic journey! And thank God for Son!

6:06 AM  
Mama Ruthie said...

I, too, share in the relief that you have arrived safely! Hope you both remain WELL & HAPPY! Our love to you-
Your Mama (AKA Ruthie) & Gary

8:12 AM  
Dina said...

Also glad here that you arrived safely!! Sounds like it was a great start to your trip and I can't wait to hear more about it!!


9:45 AM  
ellen said...

Oh Alisa, you're *there*! I am so pumped for you! Love the girly-bag-toting-Mike (with the sign, ha!)

6:18 PM  
Hute Fam said...

So glad to live vicariously through you and Mike. Thanks for the blog! Have a fantastic trip!

11:52 AM  
franzen family said...

Glad you guys are having fun!

2:12 PM  
The Corderos said...

So glad it is going well! I bet Sawyer and Sadie will host a huge raging party while you are gone! Tee Hee

3:45 PM  
Sonya said...

So where the bloody hell are you?

I've been waiting for an update for, like, 48 hours!



8:32 PM  
Dina said...

LOL, I've been impatiently waiting too!!

But I did get my invite to the big party Sawyer and Sadie are throwing!!:D


1:30 PM  
jessica said...

SOOOO thrilled you're there safe & sound!!!!

And I too am eagerly awaiting more stories and photos!

--The Holden Clan

8:41 PM  
NYMomLynne said...

I'm going to have to eat before I read your entries because it's only 11am EDT and I'm starving for fish and chips and creme brulee.
I'm also loving living vicariously through you on this amazing trip!

8:13 AM  
ellen said...

Happy (belated) Anniversary Mike and Alisa! News of those baby kicks sure did warm my heart. This one will be a born adventurer for sure ;) The trip seems a dream so far; the descriptions of scenery, wildlife, and food are making me feel right there with you, and I'm having a blast!

7:26 PM  

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