Friday, July 12, 2002

Tajikistan - Arrived!

We Made It!

The team is in Tajikistan!  It's now 11:14 AM, Sunday, in Dushanbe, although it's only 1:14 Sunday morning in back in Wisconsin.  We have watched two nights fly by (because we flew directly into them!) and are pretty tired at this point -- most of us haven't yet gotten enough sleep for even one night!  That being said, everyone is happy to be here and looking about at this country and culture with interest.

Our trip getting here involved:

- meeting at Elmbrook
- getting shuttled to O'Hare airport in Chicago (thank you Erin's parents, Jeff, Katie and Brian!)
- flying 7.5 hours or so to Frankfort, German
- flying almost immediately to Munich
- exploring Munich for 2-3 hours

- meeting up with Shannon, another team member who flew separately and had a terribly difficult time making it in time for our flight (her flight from Chicago missed its connecting flight in Madrid.  After much hassle, she convinced them to fly her to Barcelona, and from there was able to make it to Munich just in time to head out to Tajikistan with us.  Her luggage wasn't so fortunate - we're guessing it's waiting for her in a German airport store room somewhere.  She will be in Tajikistan or Afghanistan for the entire summer, so hopefully it will arrive with the weekly Tajikistan flight next week.  Since there is only one flight a week from Munich to Tajikistan, we are VERY grateful Shannon made it, even if her luggage did not!)

- flying to Istanbul for 2-3 hours and staying there for an hour in the middle of the night
- flying to Tajikistan for about 5 hours and arriving here early on Sunday morning.
- waiting nearly an hour for our Tajikistan and Afghanistan visas to be processed through customs
- arriving at our housing
- and finally, meeting as a team at Dave and Pam's place.

More to Come!

We are so grateful to be here and we know that many things could have gone wrong at any step of
the way.  We know your thoughts of us have had a great impact on our safe arrival. We are looking forward to sharing more with you about our trip as it unfolds and when we get back.  Look for more updates soon!

Greetings from the entire team!
...and converting our money into Euro! (Eric)
... and playing guitar (Jeremy, while Evan sleeps)
... and sleeping (Kody)
Greg and Eric in Chicago
in Munich - waiting!
Misty in Chicago airport
Denny, Kelley, and Forrest in the Frankfort airport
Getting ready to leave Chicago
Angela, Jeremy, Evan and Denny on a Munich street
The restaurant had a really cool interior, and the gang's all here!
The Ratskeller Munchen restaurant in the Glockenspiel building where we had lunch (or was it breakfast?)
The Glockenspiel
Tajik Air was quite a shock. We had an hour stop in Istanbul. Here we are, getting ready to re-board. Cool stairs, huh?
Kelley, Denny, Jeremy, and Evan are tuckered out. Munich is a great city, but we haven't slept much and we have a long way to go!
Kids playing in a funky Munich fountain
Erin, Becky, and Mark in Munich
The church interior
A closeup of one tower, from the other one
A cool church in Munich
In Munich, trying to figure out how to see the city and find Tajik Air (and figure out what to do with our luggage in the meantime!)
German pretzels! This is living!
The Glockenspiel up close
Did I mention that it's a 45 minute ride?
Now we're leaving the airport via the subway to go downtown
Here's a store in the Munich airport that had all kinds of interesting stuff

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