In which we switch continents

Here I am, coming to you live from Wien! So much has happened, it feels like a year has passed since we left the Trap Wednesday afternoon. We're close to being settled into our beautiful apartment (pictures or maybe video(!) to come), and we've mostly beaten the jet lag (we don't have an awake in the middle of the night problem, but we I still have an asleep in the middle of the day problem). We've already been very productive: CM is officially a resident, he has a bank account, and he's discovered his visa application was incomplete (wah wah). We've eaten Eis every day and sipped Kaffee in caf├ęs. We've shopped in 2 different grocery stores, and I think we're ready to move into one of them. We're attempting to speak German whenever possible—it's going pretty well so far, but we're not getting cocky just yet.

One more post about the Bossy Cat and I think this blog will be veering dangerously into Mommyblog territory, so I promise that this will be it for at least a little while, but I know you want to hear how she did on the transatlantic crossing, right? Yeah, I thought so.

We had grand plans to sedate her, after the craziness at the vet, but by the time we got close to leaving, she was so freaked out that she had absolutely no interest in eating the wet food with the pill crushed up in it. After much coaxing, she ate about half of it, and then she actually got into her carrier by herself, which all boded well for the trip, I thought. We were a little worried because we'd seen online that our flight to Copenhagen was delayed 2 hours—we were going to be cutting it extremely close to make our connection to Vienna. We got to Dulles with 5 suitcases, 2 bags, and a frightened cat, gladly paid for Skycap service, and then stood in a long ridiculous line. On domestic flights, people know what they're doing—lines run smoothly, people have already checked in online, everyone has their ID—it's civilized. I don't know why, but it's always mayhem in the international terminal. Nobody knows what line they're supposed to be in, 9 family members have come to see them off and insist on standing in line with the people traveling, people are repacking their giant suitcases in the middle of the floor…it's chaos.

By the time we got to the front of the line, my heart was pounding in my throat and I was having the kind of anxiety I've rarely experienced since I stopped singing. I was SO nervous about the cat. What if we hadn't gotten the right documentation? What if she leaped out of my arms as I walked her through security? What if they wouldn't let her into Austria, or there was a problem in Copenhagen? I was a wreck. But the minute we got to the ticket counter, everything turned around. They didn't check her papers. They didn't charge us for our seriously heavy suitcases. And best of all, they asked if we would "volunteer" to be rerouted…on a direct flight to Vienna that would arrive 4 hours earlier than our other flight. Ummm…YES.

Going through security was completely fine. Turns out, the Bossy Cat was not that interested in running through the airport, like she had been in all my nightmares. We waited tensely for about an hour, and then our names were called and we were put right on the direct flight. Oh, and to repay us for the "inconvenience" of being rerouted, they gave us 600 euros of travel vouchers. Thanks, SAS, you rock! We're already planning our Copenhagen vacation.

All was well. We were ensconced in our seats, eating snacks and drinking wine, and we had individual TVs with a choice of movies! I watched Date Night in German. Every once in a while, I would unzip the top of the BC's carrier to pet her head, and she seemed to be okay, just a little bit in shock. She was sleeping a lot with her head buried in the corner of her carrier…until she WASN'T. Half asleep in the darkened plane, I saw some movement out of the corner of my eye, and then all of a sudden she was climbing up into my lap, clearly very much awake. Apparently I had been a little lax with closing her carrier—oops.

We fed her another sedative, and this time she was so hungry that she gobbled it right up. Its only visible effect was to make her eyes weird and glassy. She stayed wide awake, and meowed pretty much constantly for the remaining 3 hours of the flight, taking 10 minute breaks every once in a while, during which we would almost fall asleep, only to be immediately awakened by more crying. It was rough.

Luckily, this (extremely long) story has a happy ending. After we landed, went through passport control (where we were asked not a single question), picked up our luggage (which had miraculously made it onto the new flight), went through customs (where I forced someone to look at our hard-won cat documentation, just for fun), took a taxi to the apartment, waited 30 minutes for the housekeeper to let us in, and climbed 2 flights of stairs with all our heavy suitcases…we were here!!! And the Bossy Cat has never been happier. She loves this apartment, she loves her Austrian cat food, she loves our bed. She is a loving, snuggly version of herself—no sign of the Devil Cat.

Actually, all 3 of us are pretty happy. It's good to be home(!).

6 comments:

  1. What an exciting blog! Lucy is definitely doing her part to entertain. I have this warm, fuzzy feeling, knowing you are "home".
    Love you three travelers
    (and arrivers). Grandma

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  2. What would a international flight be without a crying baby?

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  3. Hurrah for mostly uneventful travels. Despite the delays, and yay for the vouchers, I'm glad all made it across and safe. And that Devil!BossyCat did not make an appearance...fully.

    Can't wait to see the pictures! And hear more stories... enjoy!

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  4. Glad all three of you have made it and are settling in. What an adventure for the kitty. Looking forward to pictures. And there is nothing wrong with mommy/kitty blogs. :-)

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  5. Ah, good to know that everything went so well during your change of continents. I so understand all your worries about your cat, I know I would have been a wreck too. And cudos to Lucy for successfully withstanding to get rid of some... well,fluids (or more) for such a long time. Maybe the growing urge to do so was a reason why she was crying so much. Will you make your new apartment cat-safe to make sure she can´t fall out of the window? Happy settling in!

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  6. Little Ms. HardcoreAugust 8, 2010 at 5:43 PM

    Oh my God this really happened. I can't believe how much I miss you and Cameraman already. So happy that the trip went smoothly. Looking forward to pictures.

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