So it was a long flight. Really long. 14 hours which seemed to stretch to days. By the time we arrived in Los Angeles we were both already feeling pretty wiped out (I had worked the day I left and we left at 8.45 pm so with little sleep, we both felt as if we had been on the move for hours)
We arrive at LA, where we have to go through immigration and passport checks. Mum and I queue and go to separate desks to be processed. I get through first and Mum is still being checked and looking a little confused.
There is something wrong with her passport and visa. They don't match.
No probs, I say, I'll go and get the luggage and meet you back here once they have it all sorted out. And off I go.
Thing is, I start getting a little anxious when I am the last to collect my luggage and not only has Mum not appeared, she has disappeared. I can't find her where I last saw her. She is NOWHERE to be seen!
So I find the official who had been dealing with her, and after he was finished with his current group, I asked him if he knew where my Mum had gone.
He looked me straight in the eye and said: "We have arrested her and sent her back to Australia".
Now, I have always been told these guys are not ones to joke around and so, I was thinking something was definitely wrong. And that very possibly Mum was hyperventilating somewhere at the prospect of a 14 hour return trip to Australia without as much as a taste of a NYC hotdog!
What do you mean? Are you serious? Arrested?
The look on my face must have made his day and he seemed to respond accordingly, with smiles, laughter and reassurance that he was "only joking"!!!
Who said these guys didn't have a sense of humour???
He was an absolute cracker!
Aye aye aye!
No need to worry, my Mum was eventually processed and let into the country and we went on our merry way.
We have just arrived in Portland Maine, about 30 hours after leaving Melbourne. It's midday and as we need to keep moving so that we don't crash too early. The weather is warm and the pool is beckoning...