12/06/2009 – Christ Redeemer/ Flight Home
On the day we were leaving to come home our flight didn’t leave until 9:00 pm, thus giving us the whole day to kill and do some sightseeing. The coaches had put together the option to go to the beach or go to the Christ Redeemer statue. I thought well I have seen the Great Wall and who knows when I will get the opportunity to see another one of the 7 Wonders of the World, so I decided to go the statue.
Our bus left sharply at 8:00 am. Our hotel was about 2 hours away, so we thought. As our bus was climbing the hill and getting close to the statue, a guard stopped the bus and said we didn’t have permission to drive all the way to the top, so we parked the bus. We noticed there was a trolley car that would take you to the top. We all bought tickets and got in line. We went to the top and words can’t explain the size of the statue as this is nothing to what it looks like in Google images, the statue is huge. We took pictures with the statue and you had to either use a wide-angle lens or you could lie down and get the whole statue in the picture. We couldn’t have asked for a better day to go as the weather was beautiful. The clouds would move behind the statue and it was so big it looked like the statue was moving from what I could see. We rode back down the mountain and got on the bus and went back to the hotel. We had lunch and then hung out in the team room until 3:00 pm and started to make our way to the airport.
Given that this was an international flight, we arrived at the airport early, so we had time to spare. A couple of us went to the food court. There wasn’t a McDonalds but there was a place that looked like McDonald’s, however, this place was called Bob’s. I got a cheese burger that was suppose to be like a Big Mac. Yeah, it didn’t even taste like hamburger meat, but it satisfied my hunger. We finally were able to check in, go through security and made our way to our terminal. We boarded our plane and I was in the exact same seat that I was in on the way to Brazil. Our plane was huge. There were 4 different classes. The first leg of the flight was only 55 minutes, then we had a 2-hour layover and then we departed for our 9-hour flight to Washington/Dulles.
We landed into Washington/Dulles at 6am. I rushed off the plane as fast as I could, went through customs and made my way to my terminal, only to find out that my flight was cancelled. I then had to get a ticket for the next flight to RDU and it didn’t leave until 12:30 pm. Now faced with another 6 hour layover.
When I finally got into RDU, my mom’s class and local media met me for interviews. All of the kids were chanting, “Tucker, Tucker, Tucker.” I showed everyone my medals and did a TV interview. I was ready to get home. We went to dinner then headed home and all I could do was to collapse from and amazing trip.
I have posted a few picture and plan to add more later so please visit the “Gallery“.
Thanks for all your prayers and support.