Russ and I left Vancouver for the last leg of our trip on Friday, September 25th, at 6:45 p.m. It was a KLM flight and the plane was an old timer, I believe it was a MD 11. We sat in the very first seat which gives you extra leg room, you just have to store all your stuff up in the cupboards of the plane. No problemo, I watched a movie, had dinner, took 1/2 a sleeping pill and was out for at least 6 hours. They had to wake me for landing! Great trip for both Russ and me, smooth and non-eventful. We stayed right at the Amsterdam airport in a Sheraton Hotel. Ate a snack at the airport, had a nap in the hotel, woke up at 9 p.m., ate a small dinner in the hotel and went back to bed. No jet lag! This is the way to start a trip much better than leg two where we landed in Ulaan Baatar at 11 p.m. got to our hotel at midnight and started driving at 9 a.m. the next morning. No way was I going to do that again. This time in the morning we had a leisurely breakfast, worked on the blog then went to the airport at noon to fly off to Riga, Latvia.
At the airport we met Ray and Sandy. They had left Victoria (remember www.abigailshotel.com) on Saturday and flew into Amsterdam at 7 a.m. this morning. They had been waiting at the airport all day for this flight which left around 2 p.m. for Riga. They unfortunately have a little jet lag! So we were all in the same line up to check in with Baltic Airlines. When Russ and I got to our turn, the check in the lady tells us our luggage weighs too much. We tell her we have already paid extra for having three bags (between the 2 of us). She says no the bag fees are separate from the weight fees and that we are 20 kgs. over our limit (all our give aways). No problem, I go to pay for our overage and they charged us 375 Euros! That was more than both our airline tickets! Unbelievable.
Anyway we arrive in Riga, Latvia safe and sound. Edgars is waiting to drive us to the hotel and by the time we check in it is 7 p.m. Mike and Kari have already arrived ahead of us from Germany. They had a lot of fun at an Oktober Fest. Our dinner reservation was at 7:30 so we just have time to dump off our bags, brush our teeth and meet downstairs in the lobby. Our new guide was there to great us, Jurante. She is a very cute girl from Lithuania. So off we go to the restaurant which was the same one we dined at last time we were in Riga, “Hospital”. We wanted to take Ray and Sandy here because Ray is a surgeon and we thought he would get a kick out of it. Kari was fine (a slight cold) and she survived the plane ride over here. Mike was doing great, he loves driving over here (apparently he had their car up to 200 km. per hour on the autoban)!
Dinner was a huge success, despite the jet lag. The doctors and nurses remembered us. Well, at least they remembered Russ with his camera flashing. Ray was put in a straight jacket and his soup was fed to him by a very pretty nurse/server. Sandy said he was liking that a little too much and he better NOT expect her to be feeding him! We showed Ray and Sandy the tables with the sturrips, the beaker and test tube cups, plus the doctor movies on the TV’s (no sound, thank goodness). We all decided that this theme would do well in Yale Town!