Last Monday afternoon FS called at 3:20 and told us we had tickets for a train that was leaving at 4:30. Yes, we should have been packed but we weren't. Talking with FS at noon that day, it seemed like it just wasn't going to happen- that we just weren't going to be able to get tickets. Again, the difficulty with this is that most the inhabitants of our city wanted to travel during this one week national holiday and zillions of people wanted tickets to anywhere and everywhere.
But, all of the sudden, we had tickets. We managed to load ourselves and a shoddy arrangement of luggage into a taxi and arrive at the train station at 4:35... just in time to miss the train. We camped in a Chinese fast food joint for a few hours and finally our ticket "broker" met us and delivered us perfect tickets for a train that left town the next afternoon. It worked much better for us to get a better chance to really pack what we needed for our family. For example, Marian was weaned about 3 days before the milk contamination crisis hit the fan here and I forgot to pack the import formula that I trekked across town to buy for her. Praise the Lord that we could go home that evening and actually get things straight for our trip.... It was a great time!
Here's one shot of Marian in the fast food shop we waited in.... yes, she was going public in her pjs and tennies. It was such a good thing we got to return home before our 16 hour train ride and 5 day journey commenced!