Ed & Marilyn 'The Happy Wanderers' travel blog

The trip home to Hannibal, MO, was long and arduous.

After that full day tour of Rome we were worn out. This cruise/trip was wonderful but far from relaxing.

We were exhausted from the long flight over to Athens and then began the tour of Athens the next morning.

We were worn out when we finally boarded the ship the next afternoon.

No respite came because we immediately had long days in Santorini, Patmos, and then in Turkey as we visited Kusadasi and Ephasus.

The one day at sea was very welcome by this time as we finally had time to relax a bit.

The next four days, divided between Israel and Egypt were wonderful but very long days again.

After that, the next two days at sea gave us time to catch our breath but we were so exhausted on one day that we didn’t even go to dinner that evening, choosing to stay in our cabin and get some sleep.

Finally we reached Italy, and not wanting to miss a thing we tried to do it all, making a busy schedule once again.

By the time we went through all of the packing and disembarkation routines we were once again totally worn out.

The tour of Rome finished us off and we fell into bed at our hotel, quite early on the night before our flight.

It seemed as if we cleared security checks about 1000 times beginning in Rome and continuing in Newark, New Jersey.

We dragged our luggage around through terminal after terminal and tried to catch a nap sitting in those tiny little child seats they have on commercial aircraft.

After 24 hours of travel and waiting, we were delighted to see the smiling faces of our friends, Dennis & Sonja, waiting for us at the baggage claim area in St Louis.

I'm sure that we had that 1000 yard stare by the time we arrived in St Louis, but they had already located the proper baggage carousal for us and made things as easy as they could.

We were soon on the way home with no traffic at all compared to what we had seen in the part of the world we had just left.

We stopped in Troy, Missouri, for a bite to eat, and enjoyed the company of our wonderful, long-time friends.

Marilyn & I both dozed a bit as we continued our journey back to Hannibal, but soon arrived at the campground and our little rolling home never looked so good!

Dennis & Sonja carried our luggage to our door and we shared hugs with these fine friends before saying good night.

I turned on the water while Marilyn turned the water heater on.

The furnace was set to 70 degrees to warm things up a bit, and we fell into bed, leaving our luggage stacked in the living room.

One thing we discovered as we went to bed, was a gift on our pillows, left for us by Dennis & Sonja. Their kindness is simply an indication of the kind of friends they have been through the 30 years or so that we have know them.

I should mention also that they looked after our RV, truck and van while we were gone.

Thank you dear friends!

After a solid 8 hours of sleep we are up, have sipped our morning coffee, and are trying to get the unpacking done before Jennifer and the grandkids arrive.

It sure will be good to see them again!

We have a week of laundry to do and many things to take care of before we leave again. Real life has returned as we arrive home after a long journey.

Right now we cannot bear to think about the long flight to and from South Africa next year. Perhaps, after a year passes we will be ready, but it may take us that long to recover from this trip. LOL

It has been wonderful, and Marilyn nearly cries from the joy of seeing so many meaningful parts of the world. The Bible has come alive for her and she can’t wait to start reading it again, tying the words to the places she has seen.

I’d better get this posted. It will be awhile before I have time to get the pictures posted but I will get it done for you soon.

Life is Good!

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