It has been a crazy few days. The trip from Colorado was long, but not as hard as I expected. Airport security at 11PM is so much less stressful than when it is busy. It's a good thing because we had a TON of stuff We checked 9 bags and still had about 9 carry on bags. The flight to JFK was uneventful and both kids slept almost all of the way.
When we got to JFK, we had to pick up ALL of our bags and take them to the international terminal. We put our jackets in the suitcases and followed a porter with a cart piled haphazardly with many of our bags. He, for some reason, decided we needed to go OUTSIDE in sub-freezing weather to get to the adjoining terminal building. He had us chasing after him for about 1/2 a mile carrying the other half our luggage and pushing one stroller and one carseat with wheels attached (with my 3 year old in it). Nice! At least we missed the 6 inches of snow in NY the very next day.
Once checked in and in our gate area we had a few hours wait. My mother occupied my 8 month old son while I played on the moving walkway with my daughter. I was surprised by how many young men in uniform were in the terminal.
The flight to Abu Dhabi went much quicker than expected. My son was a lap child, but my daughter and I were bumped up to business class. Because we bought my mother's seat instead of having it provided by the airline as part of the signing package, she was stuck in coach. The business class was pretty cool. The seats recline to a bed in it's own little pod and we each had a TV. We all slept for a good portion of the flight. The rest was surprisingly pleasant with the inflight entertainment computer/tv and really fabulous flight attendants.
Once we arrived, I found that the apartment is EMPTY!!! I need everything from coat hangers, trash cans, curtains, a stove, fridge, dishwasher, microwave, shower curtains... the list is ever growing... I even need a mop!
We did manage to get a few things at IKEA the day we arrived including the delivery of the bed and mattresses that my husband ordered before we got here. Day two we ordered appliances, although we decided to leave the dishwasher for later.
The weather here is beautiful. There is just a slight breeze and a few clouds keeping it cool. At night my toes get a little cold, but there are people in shorts at midnight. This place is flatter than Kansas, but with all the construction on every corner (literally), traffic (seriously crazy drivers - rules seem to be optional), and palm trees, I really feel like I could be in LA. We're just missing the Mexican food.
I've had a girls night upstairs at the apartment of my husband's classmate and another classmate's wife took me to Carrefour, the supermarket. Carrefour has a moving sidewalk between levels that you can take the shopping cart up and down.
My 3 year old started school on Sunday as Friday through Saturday is the weekend off. She LOVES it! Her class is called the Cuddly Camels. She'll be learning Arabic three times a week with her class. It's a good thing considering everywhere you look things are in both languages. They have many US name brands with Arabic printed on it.
I can't get my driver's license until I have my permanent residency, which is still a few weeks off. So, I can't drive the car my husband bought and we are relying on the same friends that took me shopping to drive my daughter back and forth on days that her father is traveling. Fortunately, the have a son enrolled at the same school.
Well, I know this post is a bit disjointed, but I haven't had enough sleep and only a few moments to get on the internet at all...