January 28, 2011

With our powers COMBINED… I finished packing the morning of and went to the airport! We all kind of smile alike… and a lot. I think I actually hit a zen state of stress where I knew that we’d manage everything, and anything we forgot we’d just do without or replace. Well, anything I forgot. While it’s not exactly my first rodeo, Jaime… Jaime is a matador.

Who doesn't love airports?

Who doesn't love airports?

Mom went with us all the way up to the security entrance, as is her wont, and waved goodbye. We were headed to Chicago!

Little planes are just so cute. I dubbed ours the Chibiplane, and looked out the window at Arkansas getting smaller and smaller. We flew up into sunlight, the first sun I’d seen a few days.

Jaime and I had a 6-hour layover in Chicago, so we played cards (that didn’t last long- Old Maid doesn’t work with two people. It just doesn’t.) and chilled.

Cards!! I like this because you can see my cool camo band-aid... it makes injuries disappear!

I asked for this particular picture to be taken, and Jaime obliged:

40-League Socks

40-League Socks

Heh, I matched my fuzzy warm socks to my fuzzy warm boots! I also ran off and walked the wrong way on a moving sidewalk (several times), but Jaime doesn’t know that. She says I’m old enough to handle myself. 😀

I made my last phone calls on my little red phone before boarding this plane for Copenhagen:

Classy Outside, Cushy Inside

Scandanavian Air. It’s extra Avian. We got bottles of water and personal TVs- who could ask for more? The guy I was initially sitting next to smiled and told me that being easily delighted is a good thing. He probably thought I had never flown before, but I didn’t mind. The seat next to Jaime remained empty, so I moved up next to her.

I love takeoffs. I think they may be the best part of the air travel process, because you’re going somewhere. And they really know how to lead up to it, with the engines revving and the slow, subtle shift of the taxiing airplane. It’s like the warm-up in a techno song. And then you go faster and faster until you accomplish the impossible- man, flying. Or 22-year-old girl. I like see the world from a few thousand feet up, just to get a new perspective (or review an old one). For me, it doesn’t make the world seem less important- it’s a reminder of how big it really is.

From Chicago to Copenhagen, Copenhagen to Tallinn. Since we were arriving, not welcoming, I don’t have any pictures of that, but we walked out into a flurry of snow. Nikolai and Anna met us and took us back to their home. I was much more excited about the snow than they were, and understandably so… about the time I stared up at 6-foot snowpiles alongside the road, even I thought this is a bit much.

Jaime and I had one day in Tallinn, so she asked what I wanted to do. Here’s my list:

have kakao at the Bestseller café in the Viru Keskus

walk through a wintry Old Town Square again

say hello to Kehrwieder!

Anything else was gravy. As is obvious from the picture in the Square, a now quite-tall Siim Kohv came to spend the day with me and Jaime, and that was definitely cool! He was even gracious enough to be shorter than me for a moment. Ah, memories.

He and Jaime showed me a few places in town that were new (ish. I’ve been gone too, too long!), like the Solaris center. It contains many awesome shops (and the wonderful Lido restaurant!), and a movie theater as well.

The shop where you can use your imagination!

Jaime, channeling her inner... wanted poster?

I also got to see the Rottermanni Keskus. I asked Siim if these were done in oil pastels… he gave me a very Kohv look and said, “Sure.”

Manni Much Fruit!

The Viru Gate McDonald’s was our next stop, and somewhere between discussing reggae/rap music videos, watching the Tujurikkuja Sniper video, and Siim translating the tray paper advertisement for me, Jaime snapped this shot:

Siim came back to Anna’s for some pizza and a game of Imagine If… (in Russian. Anna translated for us, and Jaime translated for herself, which I thought was pretty cool), which Jaime thoroughly won.

I’m not sure my Tallinn day could have been better.