Alice decided that the four walls of her crate were preferable to the low arching ceiling of Dulles’ terminal. We bid her adieu after she was properly checked in, and made our way to the gate. Our Austrian Air flight crew greeted us like a crew of Chinese brides, decked out in blazing red from head to toe. Even though we were seated in a few different places, we managed to keep ourselves occupied with the inflight movie system, catching up on our feature-length entertainment and depriving ourselves of sleep while the attendants rolled the food trollies up and down our narrow aisles.
We arrived in Vienna and got shuttled through customs, as it was our entry into the EU. We walked the entire length of the airport…at least once. We boarded the flight to Pristina shortly after arriving at the gate and hopped just an hour or so to land in Kosovo.
Our bags came out eventually. Alice came out first, yelping with sheer joy at seeing Jean, bursting quite easily through the crate door to the horror and surprise of the crowd around us (Albanian culture fears large dogs apparently). Our sponsors met us outside with vans for our drive to our new home with our nine suitcases, dog crate and three children. Jean conversed in Albanian with our driver, and I strained to pick up words to add to my miniscule vocabulary. The children alternately made childish observations and slept during the 30 minute drive.
Our house. Wow. To hit the lottery once again was astounding. The house is a grand two level affair with excellent doors and windows, spacious rooms, nicely furnished. It has a fenced in yard, precenting Alice from the temptation of wandering, and also has a garage for our car (which should arrive in a couple months)
Our sponsor had done some shopping and had already set up internet (60Mbs!) for us, so within a few minutes we were online. She took us shopping that afternoon, and we marveled at the selection of local produce and low prices on staples. And the yoghurt.