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December 26th 2006
Published: October 1st 2017
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Geo: 31.9394, 35.9349

A 2:30am wake-up call. Ugh. It had been noisy much of the night, so I had not slept well, then feared to fall into a deep sleep. We are all downstairs a little before 3am. Takes some scrambling to get our box breakfasts, then we are told that the minbus to the airport will leave in about 10 minutes. Time for a cappuccino, we think. As we are settling in, the bell captain tells us the minibus is here ... but No Worry. The van will be back in a few minutes to take us. Relax. And indeed it was.

No line for check in or through immigration. We use our remaining dinars on coffee and hot chocolate. The plane is late departing Amman - where's Lufthansa's German efficiency? It is unfortunately overcast through much of the flight, but, as we pass over the Alps, the clouds break, and I am treated to a vista of mountain peaks at dawn, snowy, pink, streaked with ski runs and fire breaks, the valleys filled with fog. Lovely.

We arrive 30-40 minutes late into Frankfurt and have to take a bus to the terminal. Our SFO flight departs from another concourse, so we race through the airport, to be brought up short by a secondary security check. While they have scanners for bags, they do not have metal detectors and so are using hand-held devices. When they see we are for SFO, they bring us (and a couple of others) to the front ... only they also keep allowing anyone taking a cart or wheelchair to go ahead of us. Although we assume they know we are coming, I am nervous. I am first through security, so I rush to the gate to make sure Lufthansa holds the plane for the others. I am told, in that unmistakable Do What We Say way, to board the plane now, without my family. I do so and am relieved when the others get on a few (long) minutes later.

Although the flight is crowded, we managed to each have an empty seat next to us. Flight is on time; Kyla and I manage to sleep much of the flight home. Upon arrival, we have perhaps the easiest time through Immigration and Customs ever: walk up to the Immigration officer without waiting at all in line; entered Customs area to find our bags just coming on the belt; no line through Customs (though the customs officer asks us why we went to Egypt and Jordan - Kyla chimes in, "Because we could" - and he smiles and let us through); arrive at shuttle stop just as Park n Fly van shows up; our car was one of the few not blocked in; meet Mike at domestic baggage claim; no traffic on drive home. Arrive to find Ann has Christmas dinner under control. Great ending to a fabulous trip.


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