As I mentioned this past week, we left yesterday for South Africa. I shared more here in this video how excited I am about the trip and some details of why we’re going and what we’ll be doing on the trip.
I’ll be honest, it was really hard to leave my kids this time. I’ve not done much traveling this year and I’ve gotten so used to our quiet, simple life that saying goodbye was really hard — especially since Jesse is coming this time and we’ll be gone for 10 days! But I know I’m where I’m supposed to be and I know that they are going to have a wonderful time with my mom.
The getting to South Africa part is always an adventure! If you don’t want to have a layover in another country, you can take a direct flight from Atlanta to Johannesburg — which is a 15 to 16 hour flight! That’s a LONG time to be in an airplane seat. 🙂
But since this is my 5th time to make the flight (and my 7th long international flight in the last 2 years), I can tell you that it does get easier. In fact, I told Jesse as we were boarding this time, “I realized that I spent more time preparing for the actual trip instead of for the flight.”
That’s worth celebrating because it shows that I’m getting over some of my anxiety of being in the air for that long!
This time around, I’m super thrilled because they actually had wifi on the flight! WOOT! It definitely helped to pass the time for me to be able to get some work done and get all my emails caught up!
I spent the flight sleeping, listening to music and just enjoying the quiet, watching a movie, catching up on emails and social media (since I was offline almost completely the last 2 days because I wanted to enjoy some quiet family time before the trip), writing two posts, making sure to eat good food and drink LOTS of water (one of your big friends on long flights — even if if means you have to keep getting up to go to restroom!), and reading (of course!).
Even though a 15-hour flight seems like such a long flight, if you’re prepared, the time goes by pretty quickly and it can actually be really enjoyable! (Here are some of my tips for what to bring on long flights.)
One of my biggest dilemmas before any trip — especially a trip where there’s 35+ hours of time on airplanes involved! — is what books will I bring?! It took me three tries and a lot of back-and-forth inner dialogue before I pared the book stack down to these 5 to bring on the trip:
- Hope Heals
- Why I Stayed
- Present Over Perfect
- Big Little Lies
- The Kindness Challenge (pre-release copy)
My goal is to actually get all five of these read on the trip! We’ll see if that actually happens. I’ve been trying to read Big Little Lies since last trip to South Africa! I already started it and am hoping it actually gets finished this trip!
Want to follow along with our trip? Be sure to follow me on Instagram.