Guess who arrived at our hotel this morning?! Elmer the Elf! Elmer visits us all the way from the North Pole every year on or around December 1st. He is one of Santa's special traveling elves who visits little kids and then reports back to the North Pole to report all sorts of things back to Santa. We were not quite sure if Elmer would find us this year since we are very far from home, but he is one smart and resourceful little elf! Kian and Hannah were very excited to see him!!
After breakfast we had two very special visitors that we had to say goodbye to, Miss B and her lovely mom. I am so glad that we had the chance to see Phung during this big adventure. Hannah could not remember her Au Pair at all, since she went back to Thailand when Hannah was only about 16 months old. We are all forever grateful to Miss B for showing us around Chiang Mai and all the useful tips she gave us while we were there! Khaab Koon Khaaaaa (Thank you)!!!
Our journey to New Zealand began with a short flight from Chiang Mai to Bangkok. Surprisingly the security checks in the Chiang Mai airport seemed more strict than the ones at JFK in New York, they even checked your bags just to allow you into the airport! Despite the multiple checks, there were really barely any lines and the whole process seemed more or less hassle free. For this portion of our trip, we flew with Qatar Airways, and my oh my what an amazing airline!! I was actually kind of sad the flight only lasted about an hour! Both kids had a blast with their Thai coloring books we had purchased earlier in the week, it kept them busy practically the entire flight.
After a short layover in Bangkok, we boarded our second airplane: an 11 hour flight on board a Thai Airways plane to Auckland, New Zealand. At this point, we were no strangers to flying 11 hours on a plane having lived through one from Spain to Vietnam, but still I wasn't all that jazzed about the whole thing. The passenger that was sitting next to Hannah and I ended up changing 3 times before take off. This really turned out for the better because the lady that ended up sitting next to us was super friendly and a mother of 2 young boys. This meant that she really did not mind Hannah's crazy sleeping positions! Yes, Hannah is actually the only member of the family who slept the majority of the way. Kudos to her! The rest of us did not get to really sleep, as for one reason or another we just could not get comfortable. I did watch a few movies though, so I can't complain.
1 more flight until we are in Christchurch, but that took place the next day technically, so check back soon to see how the flight to New Zealand ended!