Kandersteg has replied that they're ready to talk turkey about dates and services. I have an insurance form in hand to fill out and return to get a quote on trip insurance. I have handed in our application for an International Letter of Introduction to the Council office. There remained only to lock in airline details to proceed to the next step.
The first quote we'd got last November was $1344 apiece. Then, yesterday the cost was $1544! I ran our budget numbers, and they still looked okay, but that was also because the flights were closer together -- we'd lose a day on our plans. Well, I asked back on something, and the cost had risen fifty bucks, and then they were gone. Prices are rising hourly and tickets are disappearing. I said we'd be willing to stretch a day in either direction in order to get a better deal. Well, the agent came back with quite a deal: price-wise, anyway. In terms of getting there, it will be a bit of an OR-deal, I'm afraid. But that's what adventure is all about. We're getting tickets to Europe for $1251 apiece, which just floors me.
The downside is, we'll have two nights without a proper bed just to get there. Here's the itinerary.
June 11 Indy to Chicago 9:50am – 10amNote, there's a ten-hour layover at O'Hare. We could probably drive there and skip the first leg, but that means our driver has to return home alone, from Chicago. So, my guess is, we'll just suck it up. Boredom passes, eventually. The other weirdness is, we land in Geneva late, which means we'll have to take a train at night to Kandersteg. A normally three and a half hour trip will stretch to seven or eight hours, dumping us in Kandersteg Bahnhof in the morning. That'll pretty much wipe out doing anything energetic that first day, but we'll be there. And we have a full week to do all the doin's.
June 11 Chicago to Istanbul 9:40pm – 4:15pm, June 12
June 12 Istanbul to Geneva 7:20pm – 9:35pm
June 20 Geneva to Istanbul 7am – 11:10am
June 20 Istanbul to Chicago 2:10pm – 5:35pm
June 20 Chicago to Indy 9pm – 11:11pm
Getting home is pretty simple. We take a late-afternoon train back to Geneva (3.5 hours, this time), hop a plane, and it's off we go. Crossing the Atlantic westwards is the Day That Never Ends, but we'll be home and dry here in E-ville by half past midnight, I'd think.
Pray for us.