22 Hours of Togetherness  

Brian and the boys and I spent 22 hours together in transit from Paraguay to Chicago.  While it wasn’t ideal, it certainly wasn’t as bad as it could have been.  The boys were mostly well behaved; it was just a long way to go, especially since American Airlines discontinued their nonstop flight from Paraguay to Miami.

We started our adventure by flying from Asunción to São Paulo.  The boys liked watching a Paraguayan harpist in the airport as we waited to board our first of three flights. 


We arrived in São Paulo around dinner time expecting to eat in the international terminal at Pizza Hut, Jimmy Buffet’s Margaritaville, or Carl’s Jr.  Instead we were stuck at a terminal that only had a small snack shop, so the boys were happy to have their negligent parents feed them potato chips, a chocolate chip muffin, and Gatorade for dinner.  While we were in line to pay, Danny was having a minor meltdown in Brian’s arms as Patrick asked Brian, “Daddy, will I get hair in my armpits when I’m older?”  The American businessman in line behind us couldn’t stop laughing. 

We boarded our ten-hour overnight flight from Brazil to Detroit and the flight attendants passed out headphones and sleeping masks.  Danny destroyed his headphones within seconds and both boys liked trying on the sleeping masks. With the seatbelt light on and the plane pulling away from the gate. Patrick took off his seatbelt and started walking in one of the aisles.  The guy behind Patrick, clearly nervous about Patrick’s actions, said in an agitated voice, “Dude! You gotta sit down and put your seatbelt on!”  Patrick complied.

Once we took off, the boys enjoyed a snack and watched a movie on their own screens until the flight attendants turned off the lights.    The boys then thankfully slept for the next seven hours.  Patrick slept in a “nest” he built on the floor with pillows and blankets and Danny slept across two seats above Patrick .  Danny only rolled off his seats onto Patrick once, and shockingly neither boy woke up.  Danny did some sleep talking during the night, asking for water, covers, and cookies. 

We arrived in Detroit and the boys were a bit overwhelmed by the airport.  It was Patrick’s first visit to the United States in over a year.  It is very different from Paraguay!  The boys loved seeing a train inside the building. 

They were fascinated by a fountain that shoots water. 

They had lots of fun in a tunnel with lights that change color. Danny kept looking around the airport and saying, “I like this place!”  Patrick summed up his early impressions of the U.S. by noting, “There are so many escalators in America!”  Not so much in Paraguay.

While we waited to board our last flight to Chicago, the boys played with the telephones in their “oficinas” (offices). 

It was a quick flight from Detroit to Chicago.  Boy, were we glad to be done traveling!  Sweet home Chicago! 

The highlight of our journey for the boys may have been the bus ride to our rental car!  

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