10 planes in 8 days

by Ljubenka

I do laugh when people say I lead a glamourous life! I was a total wreck up until a few days ago and I like many other working mothers and parents still have to keep going, no matter what.

Midflight from Sydney to Los Angeles

Mid-flight from Sydney to Los Angeles

I returned from Australia almost two weeks ago and for the first few nights was awake most of the evening with jet-lag. Oh how I love jet-lag especially traveling east! It is in my experience, always worse on your body.

The day after I returned home I had to unpack and re-pack my bag for another work trip. I desperately tried to find the time to kiss and hug my family a million times before a six-hour journey to the middle of Arkansas on two different planes. I was asleep before take off both times and I slept most of the way, only to find myself stiff and sore from sleeping upright in an uncomfortable airline chair.

Arkansas - Arriving at a late hour and the airport is empty

Arkansas – Arriving at a late hour and the airport is deserted

This is survival – I arrive an hour late and not only is it below freezing in Arkansas, my ride isn’t at the airport as arranged. I call the hotel and they don’t have me booked in with them this particular night so I go ahead and make a booking myself, catch a yellow cab for a half hour drive out of the city, heading to the woods it seemed. I watch too much Law & Order as my mind was racing – I’ve never been to this part of the world before and it was dark, cold and remote. I was wide awake at this point with my mobile in hand.

I repeat the address to the taxi driver who is approx. 6’3” and is wearing overalls, to make sure he knows where to rightfully take me. See, I told you! All he says is, “Yes, ma’am”. You can’t blame me for being nervous right?

I then wait at the hotel reception for about 15 minutes as their computer system was down and the new kid on the block wasn’t able to kick-start it without help from someone on the phone. I just roll with it – there is no point in doing anything else.

I finally get to my room after midnight and the room is freezing. It takes me about two hours to fall asleep as I kept getting up trying to get warm. I put socks on first, then a blanket over me then another, until I reluctantly turned the heater on. It sounded like I was on an airport runway without earplugs or headphones. Lucky for me, I always travel with earplugs and an eye mask. Tools of the trade.

I wake at 6am for a 7am start. Fortunately, the crew were as eager as I was for a Starbucks run before work. The shoot went smoothly and quickly enough. Jet-lag slapped me in the face again by 2.30pm and I could not wait till my 6pm connecting flight so I could sleep, even if it was for an hour. I didn’t know what time zone my body was in.

Notice the WiFi sign on planes these days - gone are the No Smoking ones

Notice the WiFi sign on planes these days – gone are the No Smoking ones

I arrive home a day later at 1am from the airport and find myself awake till 5am, lying in bed trying desperately to zone out. What can I say… I thought of one million things I could have done during this time if it were daylight. I could have been so productive.

The couple of days that followed, I stayed as still as possible and at home with my family before a busy shoot in Manhattan. I rock-n-roll from one city to another!

New York - Finishing touches at the hair and make-up station

New York – Finishing touches at the hair and make-up station

New York - Walking to the subway from the midtown studio with The Empire State Building in front

New York – Walking to the subway from the midtown studio with The Empire State Building in front

This lovely pattern went on for almost a week, including a second trip to Arkansas. I am happy to say the second trip went smoothly and without any delays. My ride even made contact before I left for New York. Happy days indeed!

I traveled on 10 planes in eight days. It is exhausting and tiring to say the least. I have finally caught up on much-needed sleep and rest. My lips are dry from constantly kissing my angels and husband… Making up for lost time.

Next stop Philadelphia… Stay tuned!

What is the worst jet-lag you have ever experienced?

How long did it take you to recover?

What remedies or methods have you tried to get over jet-lag that worked for you?

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