Published: June 26th 2011June 24th 2011
Well we are back in Australia after the most amazing holiday. We have been very lucky to have experienced all that we have and did.
We had a really interesting trip home. After leaving Sao Paulo in Brazil, flying out at 5.40pm on the Wednesday, we arrived in Santiago, Chile. Before our departure time to Auckland, there was an announcement that our flight was cancelled until Friday. However, a short while later we found out that LAN Airlines was trying to arrange another solution. This change was due to the volcanic ash from the Chile volcano that was creating havoc for all airlines scheduling, particularly around the NZ area.
After a 3 hour wait, we boarded the plane to fly back to Australia via Tahiti. After 9 or so hours, we arrived there only to sit on the tarmac for three hours, not being allowed to get out of the plane. We saw that the island was very mountainous and of course tropical. We were able to watch the in-flight movies while we were waiting for all the plane crew to be changed and the catering to be re-filled. Eight and ½ hours later, we arrived in Sydney.
We then had to arrange for a change in schedule of our last leg home to Brisbane. We learned that Kerrie & Gemma had gone to the airport in the morning at the time we were to arrive and they watched several planes arrive from Sydney. When talking to little Gemma, she said “Nannie, we went to the airport and you weren’t there”. Apparently she didn’t want to leave the airport without us. At about 8.00pm we arrived in Brisbane.
So it took 33 hours from Sao Paulo to Brisbane and we arrive over 12 hours later than scheduled. I had a shower in the Qantas Club in Sydney so was feeling pretty good. Both Tom and I felt we coped pretty well and had 7-8hours sleep in bits and pieces throughout the trip….and watched about 6 movies!!!
It was fantastic to see Kerrie and Gemma who drove us home. It was lovely walking into our home again. Kerrie had switched the fridge on, put the fundamentals in the fridge, and baked a beautiful meat pie and muffins (chocolate chip and apple). She is so thoughtful.
The next day, we collected our mail from our wonderful
neighbour Sue, who also kept an eye on our place. It was so good to know our house was being watched while we were away.
We are now [almost] back to normal, after contacting most of the family and will slowly catch up with all our friends.
I have included photos of our last couple of hours in Sao Paulo. So this is the signing off from our South American holiday, after visiting Ecuador, Peru, Bolivia, Argentina, Chile and Brazil. Africa or Europe next!!!
Pam & Tom Usher
There are more photos below