Twelve Pieces of Luggage, Three Kids, Two Parents, and 8,500 miles

Kids,

We had 12 pieces of luggage, three kids under 6, and one jet lagged parent…what could go wrong.

During the planning phase of our move we received a lot of input and feedback on our plans for moving to Mumbai.  All of it was absolutely amazing and really helped make our transition smooth.  We knew there would be bumps along the road, and we found our first one immediately when the trip began.

Our original plan for the relocation was to have us all move to Mumbai in early July right after our annual Okoboji vacation.  We expected everyone to need some time to transition to the time change prior to sending you off to a new school.  We discussed this plan with ASB during our visit in June and they strongly recommended that we wait until the last minute to bring you kids.  Their reasoning was three kids in an apartment during monsoon season was a recipe for trouble….or casualties.  They also noted that the key to overcoming the time change is making sure we keep the days filled with activities, which school did a great job of.

After some additional discussion we also figured out that there we formalities that needed to be completed once we landed to allow us to move into the apartment.  So, whoever came in July would have to stay in a hotel for two to three weeks.  Naturally we decided that it would be best for your dad to move in early July and the rest of you right before school started in early August.  This turned out to be a great decision because it did take three weeks to get all the paperwork filled out, filed, and approved before we could occupy the apartment.  These three weeks in the hotel allowed for time to look at the local stores and prepare for your arrival.  It also worked out that by waiting until August we were able to line up our move with the CII annual conference, which I’ve been involved with for the last 8 years and wanted to maintain involvement.

The 2017 CII Annual Conference was in Orlando Florida. I’d be shocked if, even as your reading this, the first thing you think of is Disney World.  We had the same thought.  So with little extra planning we decided to make Orlando a stop on our trip to Mumbai. Another stop on a long trip with the entire family and a huge amount of luggage, what could go wrong…  This is where ‘It sounded like a good idea’ begins.

As we lined out in the last post, this delayed relocation required creative packing to hold back enough stuff for you and your mother to live during the month of July.  This resulted in 12 pieces of luggage that needed to be packed and transported from our house in Kansas to Mumbai in August.

To accommodate the luggage, and the 5 of us, we rescheduled a van to pick us up at the house and transport us to the airport.  The day of departure we received a call from the transportation company asking if they could upgrade us to a larger vehicle that would be in our area earlier that day.  We told them that would be fine as long as it would hold us and our luggage, and there wouldn’t be a price increase.  We were completely surprised when a 29 passenger bus showed up at our house later that day.

You boys were absolutely amazed by the bus and were inside and buckled up before we had all the luggage packet.  Our driver Gabe was great and played along with the game of 1,000 questions that ensued while your mom and I worked to make sure we had everything we needed.

As we arrived at the airport we learned exactly how hard it was going to be to move all items along the trip.  We planned out all the activities during our move, but didn’t plan out how to get all of us from point A to B to C to D to E.  Many transitions.

Luckily the people at the ticket counter were very understanding and helped us get through check-in so our baggage was taken care of.  After getting all bags checked we breezed through security and waited….which turned out to be a trait that Johnathon did not posses, or left at home.  About every 5 minutes he told us we were going to miss our flight….which wasn’t scheduled to depart for over 2 hours.

The flight to Orlando was very uneventful, which was wonderful. After landing we made our way down the the baggage claim to find 11 of our 12 bags sitting alone on the belt.  The other one no where to be found.  Figures…  Not only did we not have all of our luggage we were closing in on 10pm, which is when the Disney Magical Express stops transportation to the resorts.  Which meant if we missed that window we’d be finding our own transportation to the lodge.  We were freaking out.

After wandering around, assuming someone grabbed our bag, I found our other bag with the Disney Magical Express handlers.  We had contacted them the day before about the service to transfer our luggage from the airport straight to our room, but were nervous that they would miss pieces since we had more than a typical resort goer. I guess our concern was valid.  (A small note: The bag they did grab didn’t arrive at the resort until 5am the next day…)

Remember throughout your lives that it’s not about the struggles that you face, but how you learn from and perceiver.  You will find hard times here and there and it’s important to not get stuck fixating on the immediate but on how the experience will make you stronger.  In this situation we took our experience and made sure that it was not repeated. More on that to come.

Love

Mom & Dad

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