Well I am a little bit past the mid way point of my Grand Adventure and I've been processing some travel thoughts.
Here they are (not in specific but rather random order)
Travel Rule #1: Never pack more than you are willing to carry. Never pack something you can't live without in case it gets lost. Never wear pants with lots of zippers.
I'm doing pretty well with this rule. Of course I had to purchase a suitcase because I've got a terrible case of Souveniritis (the dreaded disease where you think you have to purchase every cute thing you see for yourself and friends because you'll NEVER get a chance to see it again). However after reviewing the list of things purchased AND trying to pack them into a smaller space (as the airlines are trying to charge me for my extra bag) I've realized that I really REALLY have too much stuff.
My Anna may have lost her beloved Scortch on the way back from Israel. This stuffed dragon has been with her EVERYWHERE she's been since she was 11 or 12. I really hope she finds it. It's got a special place in her heart.
Today I got the Full Body Search treatment while going through the Hamburg airport. Dietmar had shared with me that many of the 9/11 terrorists came out of Hamburg so maybe the security is tighter here. They found zippers and metal on my person (pants, shoes,under where) where I never knew they existed before! And I pride myself on being a minimalist traveller--not one of those who has to spend 5 minutes taking things off in security lines. It was amazing. My friend MJ says she always gets searched no matter where she goes. And she finds it a good thing if the search is SOO GOOD that she's smiling when she's finished ;-) (ya gotta know MJ, she's got an amazing sense of humor).
Travel Rule #2: Always purchase food and drink BEFORE you get on the plane. Always go to the bathroom before you get on the plane. Always arrive at the gate at least 45 minutes before the plane departs.
As my husband well knows, I suffer greatly from HBS (hungry bitch syndrome) where I get VERY nasty if I don't have food in my stomach. I don't care if you're friend or family or friendly stewardess, you will NOT want to piss me off if I don't have enough in my blood sugar. So to keep the Dr Hyde in her proper place, I try to always snack at the gate while I am waiting.
There's a similar beast that lies within me if I have to pee, but where as Ms HungryHyde is mean. Ms PollyPee is just pathetic. She whines, she worries, she walks funny, she's embarrassing to people who know me (just ask my family). I try to not let her out AT ALL when I'm traveling but I get nervous when I don't know where the nearest bathroom is. It's complicated here in Europe because many public bathrooms require a payment of 1Euro. Always have change ready.
And as far as getting to the gate, it's good to have enough time to write a rambling blog post while waiting to depart towards my next destination.
"Home"--Aachen--here I come!