We landed at 7am local time (true to form we were delayed leaving London) the view from the plane was magnificent on the descent into Almaty, a crisp white landscape as far as the eye could see broken only by a stunning snow capped mountain range which lies between Kazakhstan and China.
You know when you get off the plane after landing somewhere warm on your summer holidays? The blast of hot air that hits you as soon as you leave the plane confirms you are really there; the same was true for us as soon as the doors opened in Almaty, although as you would understand the blast of air was not exactly hot! We can confirm that minus 28 is quite chilly actually!!
Also we are glad to report Air Astana are more generous than 'sleazyjet', when we told them we were taking aid to an orphanage they reduced the excess baggage fee from 100quid to 24quid (no pound signs on kaz keyboard).
We are staying the night in Almaty and heading out to Ust tomorrow, the city and our hotel is much like we expected, a little bit grey and ‘soviet’ but nice! One thing Sue told us when we met her yesterday is very true, the inside of the hotel, shops, restaurants, etc are absolutely BOILING, it’s a very strange sensation walking out of -28 degrees straight into +26 to +30 degrees. It’s even worse the other way round!
I’m typing this from our hotel room, we’ve just had a few hours sleep and are heading out now to try to find some grub and an internet café, if these jetlagged ramblings make it unto the blog you know we’ve been successful.
We will meet our daughter for the first time on Tuesday morning, keep praying that all will go well, we also need to thank the Lord for answered prayer in getting this far!
Also we really appreciate all the text messages, its nice to know how many people are thinking about us, remember though we are 6 hours ahead of you so if you decide to send us a text at say 6.30pm your time, when Amanda’s phone goes ‘BONG’ its 12.30am Kaz time, not mentioning any names *cough, cough* AVRIL, *cough*.
Our next post should be from Ust!
Philip & Amanda