A Little Journey

We are planning a little trip this spring.  We are going to visit the kids’ Azu (grandma).  It is a long overdue visit.  This is the last time Onen saw his Azu.  Tia has never met her.

onen's home visit part 2 101

I am excited but also completely overwhelmed by all that is involved.  It is literally on the other side of the planet.   I checked the global coordinates.  Khensa is at 26.33°N 94.53°E.  Mount Carmel is at 38°24″N 87°46′W.  That means the two towns are 182° apart.  Halfway around the world is 180°.   It is just slightly closer to travel west from here than east.  Only that isn’t how travel works. Travel is one of the really overwhelming things about this little journey.  I will bore you with all the details.

We will start our journey at 3 am and drive for about two hours to an Amtrak station.  Friends of ours will meet us and let us leave our car in their driveway while we are gone.  We will spend 3 and a half hours on a train and arrive in Chicago at 9am, 6 hours into our journey.  Then we get to walk the two blocks from Union Station to the subway station where we will catch another 40 minute train to O’Hare.  After the normal process of check-in, and security check, the kids will get a chance to stretch their legs before our 1pm flight.  This brings us to hour 10 of our journey, and we haven’t even left the USA yet.

The flight from Chicago to Delhi lasts 14 and a half hours.  We arrive in Delhi at 2:30 the following afternoon do to the difference in time zones.  Before, when traveling to Nagaland, I flew on American Airlines which arrived in Delhi in the middle of the night.  Then I’d have a few hours at a hotel to shower and try to sleep before resuming my journey at dawn.  American canceled their non stop flight from Chicago, so this time we are flying on Air India.  They arrive during the day, but when buying tickets online, only offer the option to make the afternoon connecting flight to Kolkata the same afternoon.  That means that there is a 2-3 hour layover in Delhi before catching a 2 hour flight to Kolkata.  We would arrive there 30 hours into our journey.  Then we would then have a 14 hour break before our final 90 minute flight. We will arrive in Dimapur 45 hours into our journey… 2 full days of travel.

Dimapur is not our final stop, though we do have plenty of family there. We could do lots of visiting.  We could stay for a night or two.  Part of me would love to just go ahead and get in the SUV taxi and finish the last 5 or 6 hour drive on the rugged switchback road through the hills.

Three paragraphs of the bare bones of our travel plans.

Three paragraphs of intimidation.

It was a long trip to make by myself.  It was a long trip to make with Lipok and one year old Onen.  It will be endless with Lipok, a very active 5 year old Onen and a temperamental two year old Tia.

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