I just didn’t want to leave Cambodia. Everything was starting to feel familiar again – my friends, family and my especially friendly Cambodia. I also really miss the simple pleasures of life like walking, biking, reading a paper and good coffee. But alas work called and I was starting to get myself excited again for the day to day challenges that I love about my job.
I woke up super early and grabbed Steve’s bike for an early morning ride around the Reap. Stopping in Wat Damnak, Raffles Park and eventually Sister Srey for a morning coffee.
The old Trek @ Wat Damnak
My old parking spot is replaced with kick ass graffiti. Go Sister Srey Girls!
And in less than 3hrs I was in Bangkok having lunch by the lake with Kelsey and listening to the cutest kids converse in multiple languages. It was glorious and I wish that I had more time to spend with these amazing gracious people.
Lunch with Kelsey!
What an amazing family!
3 hrs later I hit the plane and feel straight asleep and missed a meal. Didnt think anything of it because my layover in Delhi is full of wonderful restaurants, Starbucks coffee and glorious book shops. When you travel this much you plan your layovers well. I was excited.
DELHI: Unfortunately when I arrived in Delhi at the International Transfer Section, I was told that I would have to wait 10 mins for my boarding pass – no worries. 12 Days prior I had to wait 30 mins and was whisked through with Thai Airways to Bangkok. This time I wasn’t so lucky. 10 mins India time grew to 30 mins and then another and then 2 hrs. Meanwhile there was no water fountains, only a snack machine that took India rupees. You cant take your luggage to the bathroom (its a quick trip or they come to find you) no wifi, no food and just empty seats with over a dozen staff rushing (India style) people to flights.
At the end of the 2hrs the staff changed and I was told that my flight was actually cancelled there were no flights running the next day, there was nothing Air India could do to help move me on another flight and I wasn’t allowed access to International Lounge. Everything seem really confusing and the Air India Manager blamed the cancelled flight on Afghan security and the fact that Thai Airways was suppose to provide support during this time until the Air India flight. I could literally see the shit flying from his mouth when he said this. Everything was getting India complicated and for no reason.
Oh Air India staff.
By this time there was another Afghan who was also in the same predicament. We both took turns talking to everyone with really no help. After 12 hrs with virtually no assistance and bad sleep on those crazy benches we were saved when a newly arrived young couple heading to Kabul had the same problem with Air India. One of the guys had an Indian Sim and spotted me a wifi connection. In less than 10 mins I booked the only out two remaining tickets out of Kabul that day (and apparently for the next several days) It was a first class ticket on Safi Airways. We went up to the desk and got our boarding passes – the Safi staff felt very sad for us and gave us complimentary lounge passes.
Another culture shock moment when I hit the lounge. My first thought – its amazing what you can do with the internet and credit card in less than 10 mins.
First class lounge . First class culture shock. Again.
6 hrs later my friend and I boarded the plane on our first class seats and just sat there in shock. We both kept taking pics of everything and enjoyed the fact that we were heading home. I was just happy to be heading home.
36 hrs of travelling and the last two remaining seats to Kabul were first class. Whoa!
This airplane food and service was awesome.
We were both super happy to be on a plane and hilariously taking selfies. Our first time in First Class!
Sunrise in Herat
The flight was less than 3 hrs and the first stop was Herat. I watched a beautiful sunrise thinking to myself I love travelling. Its all about the journey and how it transform you, much much much more than the destination.