Jillian and I got up early and packed up our things. We got ready for our journey home. We had plenty of time, so we walked back to our “favorite” restaurant…McDonald’s… and had our last meal in China. Yuan arrived on time about 8:00 am and we still had a little time to visit, so we went back to McDonalds one last time.
Now it was time to head to the train station. Yuan would stay with us until we got on the train. We loaded our luggage in the trunk of a cab and we were off. It was a quiet ride. My emotions were all over the place. I was excited to get home yet very sad to leave. It had been an experience I would never forget.
When we finally arrived at the train station, it was under construction as well and we were dropped off somewhere nearby. Thank God Yuan was with us because I would have never found my way without him. Once we got into the station, we had to buy our tickets and no one spoke English. Yuan helped us with all of that and we were so thankful he was there with us.
Saying goodbye was very sad for me. I wanted to pack him in my luggage and bring him home with me. But we had to catch our train and head for home. We had a two-hour train ride back to Hong Kong, a 15-hour flight back to Canada and then a short flight back to Cleveland.
We finally got aboard the train but this train was so different from the one we came in on. It was very modern with two stories; it was more comfortable and much faster than the other one. It seemed like no time at all before we arrived at the train station in Hong Kong. By this time we were more familiar with the area and knew exactly what to do.
We grabbed a cab and headed for the Hong Kong airport. We got to the airport and made our way through the airport processes. It wasn’t very crowded at all and the lines were very short. We finally boarded our plane and settled in for a long flight.
Time passed so much more quickly. I worked on my computer for hours writing my journal. I also worked on editing all 450 pictures I took. I even slept for a few hours this time. Before we knew it, we landed in Toronto. Going through American customs was the hardest of all; they were very thorough and it took a long time waiting in line. We had only a short wait before our plane took off and just like that, our trip was over.
Once we landed in Cleveland, it was like we never left. We were back home and our lives would return to normal. I hugged Jillian goodbye and went back to my car. Jillian is a great traveling partner and I look forward to many more trips together with her. I guess since she didn’t kill me, we must still be friends.
The ride home felt a little strange for me. I had waited for months for this trip and now it was over…just like that! We will need to travel to China every year to pick our fabrics for each year's clothes. But our next trip will be so much easier. The unknown is over and we will become seasoned travelers...Karen