After battling traffic on the LIE, I made it to my flight (almost 9 hours from JFK to KIEV). I sat next to Gregory, a nice Ukrainian man that lives in Hicksville, Long Island-go figure. He was nice enough to chat with me for a few hours and show me Ukaraine money (grivna) and tell me a bit about Odessa. We had dinner on the plane-Remember when they served meals on the plane?
I slept for about 6 of the nine hours.
Gregory said he had tried to wake me for breakfast, but I didn't wake.
He tried to help me in the Kiev airport but we lost each other at customs.
I had a circuitous route to the next flight, Kiev to Odessa and met Al (a pediatric cardiologist, on another mission to Odessa). We layed over almost 10 hours in Kiev airport...Al's cardiology team met us there a few hours before the flight to Odessa, and they were all very interesting.
Their mission was to perform cardiac surgery for children in Odessa, for Two weeks, all paid for by their respective hospitals. So when Al turned around at the ticket counter for AeroSvit airlines and said "are you with the pediatric mission?" Of course, I said "yes!" They are two separate missions and I hope I hear from them sometime!
I arrived at the Odessa airport (after sleeping another 1 and 15 minutes on the connecting flight) and met Irina (logistics coordinator), Valerie (translator) and Nicolay (security) at the airport...they took my to the Hotel...and sent me to BED.