I have never been overseas. ever. I have wanted to since I was a freshman in college: and more than likely, before then. Yet, that goal of mine has never been fulfilled.
So I'll run everyone through the flight itenerary:
Tuesday, June 22, 2010
1:30pm: Bus ride from Philly to JFK
5:35pm: Arrive at JFK - terrible traffic in NY
9:45pm: Depart for Paris, Charles de Gaulle
7 hours & 20 minutes later, not including the delay
That's 5:30am CST && 11:05am Paris time
This was the worst flight of my life. Not that it was overnight, or that the accommodations were not up to my standards - because they went beyond my standards. It was because I felt sick the entire flight. My stomach was hurting and I had gas pockets exploding and attacking my organs (if you don't know by now, I exaggerate always). So because of the sick feeling - I was unable to sleep except for maybe 20 minutes. Needless to say, I was on edge when the half way point came around. But I made it through, but not without a bout of nauseousness, and watched two movies: Brothers & Where the Wild Things Are.
Wednesday, June 23, 2010
11:05am: Arrive in Paris
Layover in Paris, Charles de Gaulle: ie. Pass OUT at the terminal
4:10pm: Depart for Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso
5 hours & 30 minutes later
That's 2:40pm CST && 7:40pm Burkina Faso time
This flight was 78.43% better than the flight from NY to Paris because of the following reasons: I slept on the floor of the terminal. I was rehydrated. I was in a GREAT mood because I took out my camera and was taking pictures of the group & the terminal. And I was really flying to Africa!! I got on and instead of being in a seat next to another PCT I was next to a stranger; no worries, I asked how he was - he said good - and I immediately knew he was French. So I sit down and we chat for a while. It was funny because his English wasn't the best, but my French was entirely way too dusty for my to use it...we struggled making conversation, but were having fun with it anyway: using dictionaries, phrase books and having the other speak for them. He has been going to Burkina since 2005 (I think) and is dating a Burkinabe. I believe he is either working or studying...but he is documenting the economic situation in villages (I think). Anyway - I ended up passing out after dinner, which was pretty dang good! We exchanged email & he told me I should visit Koudougou, the village or town he lives in. We'll see.
7:45pm: Arrive in Ouagadougou!
Once we arrived in Ouaga (standard shortening of the word), we hoped on a bus to the terminal. As soon as we stepped off the plane we were hit by a wall of heavy humidity and heat. It's a lot like Houston during the summer - but a little worse. And the smell is pretty musky. It's pretty unbelievable that we're all here. We were then greeted by Burkina Faso's Country Director, Shannon!! She's really friendly & enthusiastic, I love it. We also met Jeff who is the go-to guy for out money $$$! Ha. $240 a month!! (unless it changed). Next came baggage & then the most magical bus ride to the Dragon Hotel. The bus had air-conditioning, but was the equivalent of a clown's car with the amount of people we had crowding into the bus. There was food waiting for us when we arrived at the hotel - well, we had cookies, apples, bananas and chips called Spuds...maybe Spunks: Knock-off of Pringles. And we had HUGE bottles of water. Learned about the different Peace Corps employees here & were said to get a good night's sleep due to the jet-lag and the amount of work tomorrow.
Me and Ashley were paired up again at this hotel, which was nice! We have a/c, internet, running water AND a television! Oh - and we had a visiter. His name was Fred and he was our gecko. Alas, we couldn't find Fred this morning. :[