Planes, buses, and automobiles…Kimi’s trip back to the US

As Trevor and I discussed the opportunity to cross the Pacific Ocean, which would make traveling “home” much more difficult and expensive, we decided to send me off to see my dad in NC and to complete my required CPE (continuing education) to maintain my CPA license in WA for the year.  We had purchased airline tickets months ago with the idea we would be in Mazatlan. When the time came for me to fly out we were still in San Carlos so the land adventure begins….

Bus terminal in San Carlos. The lady at the window didn’t speack english but as always…the person behind us spoke english and helped us out to purchase a ticket to Mazatlan
So wasn’t sure the whch bus to take as the numbers always change but i satyede outside and watched every bus for over an hour to make sure this clearly stated Mazatlan and I was bound to get on.
Aboard the bus, I was happy to see the comfort provided….TV screens and all! I watched 5 movies, all in spanish…but who cares!

I had to take a bus from San Carlos to Mazatlan where I was received by Larry and Betti, Trevor’s dad and step mom.  I flew out the next morning at 6 am from Mazatlan to Mexico City where I met a friendly guy named Leiru Lei Cruz. This guy insisted I join him for a beer, then proceeded to buy shots of tequila…..let’s just say 4 beers and 3 shots of tequila later, I boarded the plane drunk all before 6 am!

This guy and I had a great time in Mazatlan airport! Now we are FB friend!

From Mexico city –> Houston TX –> Chicago, IL –> arriving in Asheville, NC at 10:30pm local time. I was beat but super happy to be with family once again!

I had a week to spend with Dad, Barbara (step mom), and Elisa (Step sister) and the dogs Newman and new puppy, Eleanor.

Nap Time11 Newman and Elenor sleeping on Dad’s legs in his reclliner.
Sorry dad…vulnerable moment!!! This is the new and updated bathroom fully equipped with a walk in shower with jets, a sink that a wheelchair can get underneath, a new washer and dryer…new tile and really looks amazing!!!!
Daa and I made meatloaf together!!1 Super fun and delicious : )
Elisa giving dad a beard trim…al the ladies love dad’s distinguished!
This is the “walk of Emmaus” men’s group that has lunch every Wednesday. They generously let me come and join them when I am in town visiting. These guys are AMAZING and are all active in the community. It is always a blast to see these guys and I always have such a great time with such an intelligent bunch! From left to right: Art – radio chief (Navy) “ET” – communications contractor “Sprout” -Lawyer Mike – church choir director Franklin – Computer engineer Wade – worked for the EPA and has 3 masters degrees Gene – Test driver and final audit for Ford Dad- best guy in the world!!!!

This trip was particularly difficult for me.  Going, I knew with the intentions of crossing the Pacific Ocean, it would be some time before I could easily visit with my dad and being that he is not in the best of health and continues to experiment challenges with mobility, I had to have “the talk” with him and Barbara.  I won’t go into the gory details but let’s just say a few tears were shed but not without a clear understanding of the love we have for one another and the commitment to stay in touch (finally got dad on Facetime).

It was time to head to Tempe AZ to attend a CPE course for my license.  I stay with my dear friend Danielle and her family, Zakee and daughter Sakari, again!  They are propbally sick of me by now : )

Danielle and Sakari teaching Kimi how to make Thai fresh rolls
Thai fresh rolls, the finished product.
Sakari and I decorating christmas cookies! Justin Bieber playing in the background!
I attended a 2 day seminar…Danielle packed my lunch and Sakari and I were dropped off and picked up each day! I felt like i was back in elementary school…it was FABULOUS!

I have been gone for almost 2 weeks and Trevor and the boat, now safely in Mazatlan, I was ready to come home.

From Phoenix, AZ –> Houston, TX –> Mexico City…….Almost didn’t make it to Mazatlan that day!

To make a dramatic and painstaking moments short…I was reassigned to a flight the next day because I wasn’t checked in to the different carrier in time (2 1/2 hours to get through customs and immigration is too short by the way).  Literally tearing up with the prospects of both not being home and staying the night in Mexico City’s airport, I asked the agent to check me into the flight I was reassigned to.  The agent too several minutes and then told me to go to another agent NOW! I barely asked questions and took my broken suitcase full of parts I had mailed to AZ for the boat to the next bay of agents.  It looks like I could make another flight that night but now my bag was over the weight contrsitctions and I had to pay extra….at ANOTHER agent and then return to him to check me in with a receipt in hand.  I still had no idea what time my “new” flight was so I was a little stressed out.  I waited in the line to pay for my overweight bag but there were 5 people in front of me.  The “baggage” agent actually pulled me out of line to help me…she must of been notified about my situation. I paid for my luggage but my hasty signature on the relit didn’t match my “neat” signature on my passport so she had to run the transaction again.  Finally I return to the agent to check me in and got my boarding pass…..when I get through security, there was no gate assigned to my flight and I still had no idea when the flight left so I panicked again.  Finally a nice security guard told me to just watch the display and sure enough an hour later, my flight appeared.

I wanted to explain this story for 1 reason:  Through the language barrier and through my panic, all the help I received was amazing, even though I had to see 4 people to get it done.  They went out of their way to get me on the plane.  Even though I had no idea what they were saying in Spanish nor could I “read” the blank looks as they stared at their monitors, the end result was that they were helping me.  I sometimes think people assume if they are not getting what they want in the time frame or manner they expect, the service is bad or wrong but I tend to disagree.  Behind what we can’t understand is a truly universal want to help and be good.  That is what I have experienced here and with a little patience, sometimes alot, and with courtesy, I have received better service here than in the States.

I arrived in Mazatlan to the boat with Trevor waiting at the marina about 2 am.

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