Posted by: jeanannfrench | November 2, 2009

Saturday, October 31

My last day in Australia was a VERY long day.  My flight out of Brisbane left at 10:15 and landed at 12:30 in Sydney.  However, it’s only a 90


The USQ Phoenix mascot was my travel companion. Isn't he cute?

minute flight!  NSW is on daylight savings time and QLD isn’t. It was a GOOD thing that I was on the phone with Sparky at  what I thought was 1:45 and having a nice lunch because Sparky reminded/alerted me to the fact that I was reading QLD time on my watch and NOT Sydney time.  He was telling me my fight was leaving in a half hour and I was telling that I had an hour and a half.  The good news is that I had made my way from domestic ALL the way to international and was only about 5 gates away.  The plane had started to board, but I was seating 4 and got on with no problem.


Good by Sydney.

I won’t bore you with the details of a 13 hour flight – it is what it is, a necessary evil for getting half way around the world.

I got into San Francisco and transfered my luggage after customs, but one of my bags didn’t make it to Seattle.  I did receive it on Sunday.


This is SF in July on my way out, but so beautiful I wanted to share.

My lovely husband was waiting at the airport for me in baggage with a dozen red roses and a great big beautiful smile.  I was really happy to be

PB020001 (2)

Beautiful red roses.

home and it just got better every hour.  My first sign of ‘directional’ confusion showed up in the Seattle airport.  When one is in a country that drives on the other side of the road, they also ‘walk’ on the other side of the walkways including escalators.  The first set I started to take, I headed for the left side instead of the right.  I continued to experience the same confusion with lanes as Sparky drove home.  I don’t expect to have trouble when I actually drive, but I do expect to have to ‘think’ about it – just as I had to focus in driving on the left side.

My son’s birthday is 10/31, so I asked Sparky if we could stop by on the way home and see the kids.  We did and took Karla and Eric to dinner, which was a perfect thing to do!

I’m sure you have a pretty good idea of just how much Sparky missed me, so you won’t be surprised to learn how he ‘welcomed’ me home with signs and balloons.

Jean Ann Welcome Home 002

This was but one round of welcomes.

As much as this trip to Australia was MY big experience, I have to give Sparky a lot of credit for the support, encouragement, and love he gave me over the 16 weeks.  He has truly been my champion.


I love you with 3 hearts tied to my mointor.

I don’t see how I can continue this particular blog, as my assignment has come to a natural close.  For those of you who faithfully followed my blog, I thank you.  I’m sure that I don’t have to explain in this final moment just how much the experience, the people, and the work meant to me.  My blog is laced with significant moments, feelings, pictures, and insights.  Again, thank you to each and every one of you who have shared this journey with me . . . with your thoughts, prayers, and words of encouragement.

Love,  Jean Ann



  1. What an amazing journey! It was fun to share your experience through your blog. I read it every day. Love, Tami

  2. I echo Tami’s comments. I am so happy you had this experience and enjoyed reading about your travels. I didn’t read it every day but would read it every few days to catch up. What an amazing trip! We are very proud of you!

  3. Welcome Home Jean Ann. Glad to hear you are back safe and sound. What an adventure. It looks like you are headed on another adventure soon…. to Mexico. WOW.


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