Tuesday, June 28, 2016

LET THE EUROPEAN ADVENTURES BEGIN.......DAY 1

And so he adventures begins.  The day wasn't without dramas though as we got to the airport and realized that we had left our computer at home sitting on the couch.  Dan's mum Sharon had dropped us at the airport, so it was a quick call back to her to see if she could try and duck home and pick it us for us, considering that Steve really didn't have enough time to go home with her to get it, as we were due to board within 15 minutes.  The air hostess was really good and left Steve to the very last minute to board, but unfortunately we probably missed Sharon by about a couple of minutes because she was back at the airport parking when he was told that they couldn't wait a minute longer.    It is going to make life a little difficult without it as I had all the travel details on it, and also had hoped to download photos daily so that I at least had all my photos backed up, so without it now, it will be very hard to keep on top of photos and posts.... Just means a holiday without much technology especially when we go through Europe.

The  flight to Brisbane was good.  I had a window seat and the views of some of the clouds were really quite awesome,  streaking across the sky,  big white puffy clouds...

Awesome cloud formations
  By the time we arrived in Brisbane we still hadn't heard whether Willow had been given the all clear by the doctors to fly with us, as she had been suffering from ear ache for most of the week.  Sarah had a 9.30am appointment with the doctors for him to either allow or not allow Willow to fly.  I must admit we would all have been pretty devastated if she couldn't come...
getting ready to leave Brisbane...
ready to leave
We were very excited when Sarah rang to say they had the all clear and she would be joining us in Denmark, and that they were on the way to the airport.
time to board.....
Boarding our flight
Someone is very excited about boarding the flight
Our plane
We left Brisbane around 2.30pm flying Singapore Airlines...  Unfortunately we were not all seated together on the flight to Singapore.  Sarah, Willow and Max were in Row 30 because they needed to be seated where a bassinet could be placed for Max.   Steve, Chloe and I were in row 45.  It wasn't too bad because we at least were on the same side of the plane as Sarah and several rows behind, so we could at least monitor Willow coming back and forwards to us both.

The flight to Singapore wasn't too bad...the seats were comfortable and I had plenty of leg room on this flight....  We landed in Singapore around 8.15pm (10.15pm Australian time).  We had a three hour layover in Singapore.  The first thing we did was find our departure gate so that we knew where to head to plenty of time to catch our flight.  Then it was off to look for showers..... we all felt pretty gross and knew that if we could have a shower we would probably sleep a lot more on the next leg.  
The showers were pretty expensive.  It cost us something like $80 Australian for all six of us to have a shower...  In the end it worked out well as we were all feeling pretty gross and the shower refreshed us for the next leg of our journey.
Singapore International Airport
At the airport in Singapore
pretty magical airport

Checking out the fish ponds in the airport in Singapore
Sarah had been to Singapore before so knew her way around the airport.  She took us to see the huge goldfish and the Butterfly garden that are both housed at the airport.  The airport is huge with three terminals,  almost a city within a city.  Singapore was very hot and humid....

By the time we had all had our showers, it was time to head back to our departure gate.  We ended up taking the Metro back as it was a good half hours walk from where we were to where we had to be to board our flight and we were running a little late.

We decided that on this leg of the flight that Chloe and Willow would swap seats, so that we could lay Willow down more to allow her to see, rather than having to sit all night next to Sarah where you couldn't remove the air rest.

By the time we left Singapore, 11.30pm (1.30am Australian time), Willow and Max where still wide awake.  This was more than 7 hours after their bed time.  Even as we were buckling in and getting ready for take off, she was still wide away and alert.  Fortunately for us, the cabin lights all go off for take off and by the time the plane had taken off, she was sound asleep.

This flight for me was no where near as comfortable as our first leg of the journey.  For a start you couldn't completely put the air rests up, which meant that it was digging into my arm., it also made it really difficult to sit up straight, so my body was twisted for the whole 12 hours,   Also my original seat had a box mounted to the floor in front of me which gave me no leg room what so ever, and I truly did wonder how I was going to out up with this for over 12 hours.   In the end Steve swapped seats with me which did give me a little more leg room, but my body was still quite twisted and I had to put a cushion behind my back to support my hips.

We were pretty much seat bound for the first 7 hours of this flight whilst Willow slept as she was sprawled over both our laps, and there was no way we were going to move and wake her up.  We were offered a meal around 2.30am, and the hostesses constantly bought around glasses of water and fruit juice ot keep us all hydrated...
Trying to catch some shut eye whilst we could...
This leg of the flight was pretty uneventful.  WE did manage to catch broken sleep on and off for the first seven hours whilst Willow slept.    We could see dawn breaking as we flew over Russia and it was really pretty as you saw the sun rising over the curved horizon.
Sunrise over Russia
Sunrise
sun coming up over the horizon
Early morning Max cuddles
Willow with Poppy at breakfast time
Breakfast was served two hours before landing in Copenhagen.  The last hour of the flight was pretty good with beautiful views of the countryside as we flew over Sweden.  The countryside was all very flat with lots of farmland and villages scattered everywhere.  We saw wind farms in the ocean as we flew into Copenhagen.  We  arrived in at Copenhagen around 6am (danish time).

 It was raining quite heavily when we landed.  Getting through customs was a breeze.  Our passports were stamped  and that was pretty much it.....
raining as we were landing
raining as we land
the rain was really quite heavy
We arrived out into the main terminal area to find both Peter and Maria welcoming us by waving Danish flags.  It was so good to finally see them both.
Arriving in Copenhagen
We had a huge amount of luggage and seeing as our hire cars  wouldn't be ready for another few hours, we decided to put our luggage into storage and catch the metro back to Pete's place and then they could go back to the airport later and pick up the cars when they were ready.....  Catching the metro was a bit of a novelty,  they are completely automated so no drivers.
catching the Metro
getting ready to hope on the Metro....
Chloe, Willow and Maria sat up front.  Chloe got some awesome photos and video footage of the ride into the city.
on the metro
Once in the city centre we were warned by Peter and Maria to watch the bike lanes the same as we would the traffic.  I have never seen so many bikes .  They are everywhere and I was completely blown away at how fast they all travel on there and I was amazed to see women wearing stiletto heels whilst riding bikes and men in suits riding them....
The main metro terminal in the city
We then caught a bus to Pete and Marias.  They really don't live that far from the city centre.  They pointed out some interesting sites and shops for us to visit in their neighborhood.

First impressions of Peter and Marias.  We just loved all the beautiful red roses growing up outside their apartment and framing their windows.  Their apartment is very Scandinavian, very small but a wonderful use of space with plenty of storage.
Looking out their window
flowers outside their windows
We were pretty exhausted by the time we arrived... My back felt like it was broken, more from lack of sleep and I was feeling pretty weak.  I lay down with Willow and had about an hours sleep.  Peter and Sarah went for a bike ride to get some lunch and whilst they were there, Maria, Chloe and Willow all headed around to Banana Park to explore before they all headed back to the airport to pick up the hire cars.  I looked after the children.

My back was still very sore so I decided that a little horizontal rest would do me the world of good.   I ended up going back to sleep for another couple of hours....

Pete was taking off to fly to Amsterdam for his buck's weekend with the boys from Australia and a couple of his ex pat friends from Copenhagen.....

Around 7pm,  I took of for a small walk around to Banana Park with my camera.  There were still quite a few people, picnicing and playing in the park.  I got to take a few photos of this lovely area.    It was after 8pm before I got back to Pete's place and it was after 8pm before we put the kids to bed, and almost 10pm (and still very light} before we crawled into bed. It felt really weird as the sun was still pretty high up in the sky.  Even with all the blinds pulled it was still very light.  I think we were so tired through that it didn't take us very long to fall asleep at end...
This ended our very first day in Copenhagen.......

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