Tuesday, October 28, 2014

The trip home

After all the adventures we have had with trains over the last week we asked Graham if he would rather drive us to Hamburg for our flight (rather than us taking the train with all our luggage).
The photo on the left is one I got off the internet - beautiful isn't it. We took the photo to the right of some of the gantries we saw. It was so strange to see such a big harbour so far from the sea.
Hamburg is over 100km from the sea but is still the largest port in Germany and the 3rd busiest port in Europe. No wonder it caught our attention.
We took a short flight down to Frankfurt and then had the first long flight to Shanghai.
We had our first ever flight on a huge double decker Airbus. Not only was the aircraft huge - it was also overbooked. They were asking people who could - to take the next available flight. There were so many Chinese people obviously heading home after a weekend of shopping in Germany. They didn't just have their 1 hand luggage bag and 1 extra small bag - they generally all had 3 big bags - one at least a big shopping bag.
It made me a bit nervous - thinking about this massive aircraft having to get into the sky - along with all this extra luggage.
It was incredible though. Out of all the flights the take off and landing seemed the most effortless and definitely the quietest. It was a wonderful experience.
Thankfully Asher did fit in a bassinet and she had a good sleep for this first flight that was through the night for us anyway.
With her not only having her two AEDs but also ibuprofen as often as she could - it was quite a detailed list that I kept of times, medication and dose.
Her doctor had said that we could up her long term AED from 5ml BD to 7ml BD if necessary, but when we gave her 7ml on Saturday evening it made her so drunk and kept her from sleeping. We decided to rather spread the 14ml over 24 hours in 3 smaller doses. This worked better through Sunday and Monday and then we got her back to her old dose.
Thankfully she was feeling ok in Shanghai for our almost 3 hour layover.
These moving walkways were close enough to escalators for her - so she enjoyed them just as much. :-)
And although I am sure we still had her shoes at this point - somewhere in the next 12 hours one of them got lost. Yes, just one.
The flight from Shanghai to Auckland was an Air New Zealand flight and we were so thankful for this. They really are a great airline. We had ordered a "baby meal" with all the flights but there was not any guarantee there would be any food for her.
With this flight they actually brought her two big bottles of baby food on a try as they started handing out meals. And it was such a blessing as she was really not feeling well on this flight but managed to eat the fruit ones. So it made me feel a bit better knowing she had something extra in her tummy. There was no way she had energy to chew anything.
She slept most of the flight other than when she was awake and uncomfortable. So I kept a careful note of all the medication she was giving - making sure we adjusted to each time change as we travelled.
When we got to Auckland we sorted out our different connecting flights to Christchurch as Brendon was staying to take a later flight with the other children. Then I found a pay phone and called the hospital to get their advice on Asher. I wondered if I needed to bring her to the hospital when I arrived in Christchurch. She had already had a fever for almost 3 days.
I had a good chat with them and they felt it was not necessary to do anything more than what we were already doing. That was a great comfort. She suggested that if there was no improvement in a few more days - that we could just get to the local doc to see if antibiotics were then necessary.
It was great to have Noortjie at the airport when we arrived. It was nice for me to have the company and helped the time to pass more quickly.
The children and Brendon arrived safely and we all headed home together. Added to the business of the day - Rachel had her ballet and St John stuff all ready in our car - so we dropped her off at ballet on our way through Amberley. She had missed 2 weeks and so didn't want to miss another. :-)

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