Homeward Bound

We leave Auckland today and even though we depart at 7:30 p.m. we're scheduled to arrive in Tulsa around 11:00 p.m. Traveling across the international date line always makes for an interesting itinerary!

Our trip home should be interesting. My colleague received a call today from Quantas informing her that our plane was severely delayed. They re-booked us onto a flight to LAX on New Zealand Air. This means that all of our connections in the U.S. have been re-booked as well. Something tells me that our journey home may not be as smooth as the one over here. At first they didn't even have me on the list as traveling with her! Thank goodness she squared it all away and also that she had her cell phone with her on this trip. Otherwise, there us no telling what may have happened. At this point I am just grateful she got the call and was able to find us a way home, otherwise we'd have to stay here another night. Tomorrow is J's 32nd birthday and I really want to be home in time to celebrate with him!

We have a late check-out and I am killing time. I had a good breakfast and was nervous about packing five bottles of wine in my suitcase (four I bought at the winery the other day and the other was a gift from our hostess)...so I ventured out and found a packaging store that sells styrofoam cases that are molded to hold wine bottles. I also got a box, some styrofoam peanuts and packing tape. I packed it all up and fashioned a carrying handle with some of the tape. Here's hoping it gets through customs and TSA without any hassle. I also stopped by the gift shop and picked up two Paua Shell earring/necklace sets...one for mom and one for me.

Paua is a type of abalone that only grows in the waters around New Zealand, so I thought that would be a nice souvenir from this trip. I'll give the wine to J for his birthday...he can add it to his little collection. That is, if it makes it home in one piece. Same could be said for myself, I guess. Wish me luck!