I will never forget the day I flew from Winnipeg to Amsterdam. I had never even been on a plane. This was way back in 2011, November I believe. We had three connecting flights. I was incredibly nervous, but also quite excited; my first plane ride ever and I was going halfway across the world!
I had a genius idea to use a backpacking bag as my carry on. I made sure to measure it, so I knew it would be acceptable as long as I didn’t fill it too full. I was given a raised eyebrow by the Air Canada employee who was checking the passengers in. She told me she did not think it was small enough. I eagerly ran over to the little compartment they have to physically check the size of your bags, it barely fit. I am pretty sure I heard a hint of sarcasm when she agreed it fit. She was unimpressed, but what did I care? I was on my way to Amsterdam!
The first plane was not bad, it was a short flight from Winnipeg to Toronto. It did land a bit late, and running through the airport trying to find your next flight is never fun. The Toronto airport is huge! I wish I could have spent more time in Toronto, I would love to visit the city for a couple weeks.
The next flight was from Toronto to London. There was too much fog or rain or some sort of bad weather in London, so we flew around in circles in the sky for about an hour. I had a window seat so it was really fun watching the plane get closer and closer to London. The rows of old buildings were so incredible and beautiful. Something I had only ever seen in the movies was right below me. I was almost at my destination. I had excited little butterflies fluttering in my stomach.
Now we had a flight from London to Amsterdam. This plane was smaller than the other two. I was also completely exhausted at this point, I think we had a total of 16 hours of flying. When I was a child I had a lot of problems with my eardrums. Take off was not fun on this flight. Landing was even worse. I was crying because my eardrum would not pop. Even after landing and collecting my bags, my ear still hurt. I was tired and miserable.
We were officially in Amsterdam! Holy crap! Now just an hour drive to the village we would be spending the next year (which turned out to be only five months), everything looked so strange. The paint on the roads, the funny blue signs, the weird trees with moss growing up the sides. Our driver told us that we are almost there. We were driving down what looked like a country road. Then we got the first glimpse of our new home. It was so unreal at the time. I just wanted to sleep.