Arrived For Yet Another Year

Sept. 8, 2007

I have arrived. It was a long flight, but I managed to stay up for the 38 hours so that I could try to get on the right schedule. I have one minute on this computer so I have to go but will post more later.

Sept. 9, 2007

Well, tomorrow I start work. Yesterday, I went by and checked with security about getting on base and about the rental car, but it can only be done Monday through Friday, so that will be another trip. Last night I woke up about 4 ready to go so I guess that is not to bad with the time change. I think I did much better than the last time I was here.

I want to thank Ms. Jenkins for the ride from the airport to the car rental place. We had fun! We found out that GPS is only so smart!!

Well, time on this computer is over so I must sign out. More later.

Sept 10, 2007

Karen with Nicholas Cutnutt
Karen with Nicholas Cutnutt

The flight was a long a very bumpy one. Even the flight attendants were asked to sit down 3 or 4 times. I don’t sleep on the aircraft, so by the time I finally got to bed I had been up 38 hours. When I was getting on the aircraft I noticed a man with an Army ROTC recruiter shirt on. He was with a boy about 13. When they called us for the plane the man was giving the kid a kiss on the forehead and I realized the kid was traveling by himself. I told the man I would help the kid if need be. The man thanked me. The kid was in an A seat and I was in an F seat, so we were across the plane from each other. When the plane was about 30 minutes from landing I watched the steward go around and talk to about 4 kids, they talked to the one sitting about 2 rows in front of me and asked her to grab her bags from the overhead and meet them at the front of the plane. One of the kids was the one traveling by himself that I had met before the flight. When I got off the plane I noticed the kid was walking in front of me and realized that he should have stayed with the stewards to get to his next gate or through customs to meet his family. When we got to the end of the ramp he was very lost and I stopped him and asked him where he needed to go. He said he had to get his bags. So I told him to follow me. Frankfurt is a big airport and it was a long way from our gate to baggage claim. So I explained to him that when he traveled to always look for the baggage claim signs. When we got to the passport control he was EU and I was non-EU so he got through much faster than I did. I showed him where to go through and told him he could wait for me on the other side. He did and we made our way to baggage claim. His luggage came down first and I told him he could go through customs and his family would be waiting for him right outside the door. Well, he may have left the aircraft because he knew he was a big boy and could find his own way but he now thought it was best to stay with me and told me he would wait for me. I got my bags a little later and we made our way through the custom checks. I saw Ms. Jenkins right away with my name on a sign. The young kid was right behind me and when I turned to ask him if he saw whom he was waiting for he was looking at a man that was coming after him. I made sure it was the right man and then went to the woman who had come to rescue me from a very long, rough flight.

The trip to the car rental office was quick, as we had lots to talk about. When the GPS told us we were at the rental office we had to laugh, as it was across the median and behind a very large wall. So about 10 minutes later we had made our way there. The cheapest car that was reserved was not available since the previous renters had extended it so I am paying 100 euros more for the month. But I am hoping to be able to change it in the middle of the month when they return the other car. When I got into the car I realized it was standard and thought, ‘good thing I know how to drive standard.’ But, I was so tired I was not sure it was a good thing for me to be driving at that particular moment. I only stalled it once when I stopped at a stop sign and thought it was in 1st when it was in 3rd.

We then headed to the small German village where I am staying. The GPS took us to the village, but not directly to the house, so I was hoping that I would recognize something from staying with these friends the one night in April. When we got to the village I did not recognize the street until we passed it and could not get Ms. Jenkins attention [she was leading the way] so we drove through the village until we got to the end of it and she stopped. I told her I thought I would know the street we had to turn on from the other direction and I would try. We were lucky and I did manage to find my way there. We got everything unpacked and it was nice to stop moving.

Since it was now about 2:30 in the afternoon it would not be a good thing to go to sleep. My hostess and I talked for about 2 hours when her husband called and said he was at the local pool hall and wanted to know if we would meet them there. Off we go, which was good to keep me awake, but I don’t think I was much company. We got home about 7:30 and I went to bed at 8:30. I woke up at 9:30 Saturday morning the 8th.

I will tell you about my first day at LRMC as soon as I can get more computer time.

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