Claiming our baggage is taking forever.
When our the kids’ stroller finally arrives, I silently praise God and proceed to buckle in my cranky kids. Everyone is staring (as strollers are as common here as snow), but I’m relieved that I won’t need to worry about the kids running off.
At last, after leaving the circus that is Kochi International Airport (we had to go through a security check again after deplaning—why?!), we emerge out to the street level.
It’s about 4:30 am local time, and I’m not sure if I feel hungry, tired, or awake enough not to fall asleep. I walk into a wave of humidity, which is so heavy it feels as though I’m being wrapped in an army blanket that’s been soaking in hot water and is now smothering my whole body and face.
My in-laws are supposed to be meeting us here, but there’s no way to call them, as none of our cell phones work here. We look through the throngs of people waiting for their relatives to emerge from the airport. We know they’re arriving in a large van…After several minutes, we spot them.
We meet up with my husband’s parents and climb aboard, where my sister-in-law is sitting with her two kids. My husband’s immediate family members (including his brother, who joined us from Dubai) are finally all together after several years. I settle in for the two-hour drive to Thrissur.
As the trees and landscape whiz by, I find it hard to believe it’s already been two years since my last visit. I feel wide awake, as it’s only about 3 pm back in the US. Peanut falls asleep (she loves car rides!) and Pumpkin is dazed by the new sights and sounds all around her. At age three she can’t possibly understand the journey we’ve undertaken.
The rocking of the moving vehicle finally overpowers me, and I surrender to a hideous slumber.
We reach the house and someone shakes me awake. The sun is just coming up. I vaguely remember the others removing all the bags and pieces of luggage from the van, and I’m too sleepy to do the final count, or look for the diaper bag.
When my husband and I get the kids situated in our room upstairs, we let them sleep and decide to have breakfast, and maybe sleep later in the day. We want to adjust to IST as soon as possible.
I’m feeling okay after breakfast, and we hang out and talk with the others. My brother-in-law (BIL) is excited and a little nervous about his wedding next week.
After lunch, around 12:30 pm, I feel a wave of exhaustion sweep over me, and I can’t think about anything but going to bed. My circadian rhythms, still on US time, think it’s around midnight, and I can’t keep my eyes open.
Just before we go up for a nap, my mother-in-law (MIL) reminds us that the day after tomorrow, we are all going into town to buy our wedding sarees and suits, meet my BIL’s fiancée and family, and help pick out her wedding gold.
Gotta adjust to IST. Gotta adjust to IST. Gotta adjust to IST……