“True love is not so much a matter of romance as it is a matter of anxious concern for the well being of one’s companion”
-President Hinckley

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

so, we moved to Korea

After all the stress, anxiety, and paperwork, we are finally in Korea, together, as a family. I can't even tell you how blessed we were to be able to travel together. Every person we talked to said it wasn't possible, that it would never happen, that I would be going it alone with 2 babies. But then heavenly Father stepped in, and now here we are.

So, about the flight. It wasn't nearly as bad as I was thinking it would be, which was a huge blessing. It was about a 9 hour flight to Japan, and then another 2 hours to Korea. Here's how it all went down:

On Saturday evening we flew from Salt Lake to Seattle because that's where our flight to Korea would leave from. We were hoping to just check into our flight (super) early and then spend the night in the USO. Turns out, the flight we were taking was a military flight, so there was no way that was going to happen. There was no one at the desk, so we couldn't check in or get rid of our baggage and we weren't sure what we were supposed to do, so we went up to the USO and asked them. As fate would have it, every single person in the USO was in the same boat we were. They told us to store our luggage in the annex, and then hang out until midnight, which is when we needed to go get in line for check in because check in started at 2:30am. WHAT!? I guess on military flights they don't assign you a seat until you actually check in, so everyone was scrambling to be first so they can get on the flight and get a good seat. We were doubly stressed because we wanted to be able to sit together, not just get on the plane. As in traditional Army fashion, is was completely ridiculous and inefficient. Dan left us upstairs so the kids could sleep a little and went down to stand in line, but was then told that his family had to be with him to hold his spot. Again, what!? It wasn't too much of a sacrifice on our part, though, because we were sleeping on the floor, so I wasn't even asleep, and Evie wasn't sleeping well. The good news is that they made a separate line for families, so we got in pretty quickly and got 4 seats together. After we checked in, we went back to the USO and tried to get some sleep. I think Dan and I got maybe 2 hours and Evie got about 4, but lil Emmett slept the whole night and woke up at his usual time. Wouldn't it be nice to sleep in a car seat and have everyone just carry you around? He's such a champ. Then we made it through the enormous line at security and got on the plane. The plane ride itself is a bit of a blur because I was so exhausted, but from what I remember, Evie and Emmett both did great. Evie slept for the first 3 hours or so because she was so tired, and that made things a LOT easier. The food they gave us was surprisingly good, and Evie was mostly content. Our only mishap was when Emmett blew out his diaper and I didn't have a change of clothes for him. The poor kid had to just wear his sleep sack for the rest of the day. I regret not taking any pictures of him, because he seriously looked like a little redneck kid in overalls. We stopped in Japan at a military base there for a couple hours, which was weird. It was weird because I knew we were in Japan, but it didn't look any different cause it was an American installation. Everyone scrambled to find outlets to charge their many devices and mostly just sat and waited. And waited. And waited. Luckily they had a tiny kid play place, so Evie was able to run around and play with other kids. We finally got back on the (dang) plane and headed for Korea. Again, I don't remember much because I was running on fumes by this point, but I remember getting to Osan, Korea just fine. Once we were there, they brought us all into a big room and gave us lots of lectures about customs and immigration, blah blah blah,which was completely unnecessary if you ask me because the Korean guy at the immigration desk barely looked at our form and sent us on our merry way. Customs was even sillier because they just asked us if we had any contraband items on us, and when we said no, THEY sent us on our merry way. After that, they sent us to some buses and we did a lot more waiting. The buses then took us to Yongsong, which is where things got pretty interesting.

We were supposed to have a room set up for us at the Dragon Hill Lodge on the Yongsong base once we got here, but there was some sort of blackout or something, so they couldn't access our reservation or make any room cards. We opted to just go to a different hotel for the night instead of just wait around for them to get their system up and running, so we ended up at the Capital Hotel instead, which was off base. By this time, we were all barely functioning. And I mean, barely. Emmett and Evie were both totally asleep and Dan and I were complete zombies. Not to mention, we all smelled terrible because Dan, Emmett, and I had been 2 days without a shower and Evie had been a record 3 days. They sent us up to our room and when we got into it we just sort of looked at each other and giggled. It was a little tiny room, but they managed to squeeze 2 twin beds, a kid bed, and a crib into it. Seriously little. The best part, though, was the bathroom. The counter came up to my knees and the toilet was so low to the ground it was ridiculous. Again, we just had to giggle, due to our state of hysteria. I guess Dan and I will just have to resign ourselves to being giants for 2 years. The beds felt like we were sleeping on a wooden board, but man were we happy to see them anyway. The next morning, a bus came and took us back to the Dragon, which is where we are now. It's super nice and has all kinds of things inside, like shops, a play place, restaurants, shopette, salon, and many other things.

That's all the update I have for now. We spent our day yesterday watching movies, so we haven't really done or seen anything yet.
View from the plane, flying into Japan

The Capital Hotel lobby


View from our window. So pretty.

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