Day #253 in lockdown in Mumbai, India hotel…Apprehension follows enthusiasm…

The bright sun creates a sparkling sea, which we’ve cherished every day that we’ve been in Maui. There had only been one overcast, and rainy day in the six weeks we spent on the island, although it rained for short periods for many days, to become later sunny.

Today’s photos are from this date in 2014 while wrapping up our six-week stay in Maui, Hawaii. For more on that day’s story, including our final expenses for the stay, please click here.

We’d be foolhardy to assume we’ll be able to board that flight to South Africa without incident. When we arrived at the Mumbai Airport on March 20, at 1:00 am while waiting in a queue for hours, four days before the official lockdown, we were turned away for the flight to South Africa, as they were slowly closing their borders in a highly inconsistent manner.

All these photos shown today were taken on a sunny Sunday early afternoon.

We ended up having to return to our original hotel in Mumbai, which informed us they were closing the next day.  It was a nightmare. We haven’t forgotten a minute of those first few days until we eventually settled in this hotel. For that whole story, please click here.

Miracle of all miracles, when almost every hotel in Mumbai had closed, the Courtyard by Marriott Mumbai Airport remained open. Over the next few weeks and months, we were worried this hotel would be forced to close as well, often asking the reception staff for a status update. For this, we are very grateful.

Hibiscus bloom year-round in the islands.

In yesterday’s post, I whinged, whined, and complained over issues we encounter daily, mainly with other guests not wearing masks and social distancing. Later in the day, I felt terrible for perhaps sounding ungrateful. The hotel staff has been excellent, albeit inconsistent at times, and the hotel itself is lovely. To see yesterday’s whiny post, please click here.

Please don’t write and beat me up. I’ve done it enough to myself already. We are grateful to have been able to live in this safe, clean, air-conditioned hotel room for the past eight months, precisely 253 days to be exact, as shown above in the heading. We’re grateful for the staff’s kindness, the food, although limited due to our design, the comfortable bed, and the excellent WiFi. We’re thankful we’ve been able to afford living here for what will prove to be ten months by the time we leave, hopefully on January 12, 2021.

And yet, a few new blooms magically appear in the tropical climate.

We always promised to tell our readers “like it is,” and sometimes that isn’t “pretty,” The reality remains, we could be turned away at the airport again on January 12th. With COVID-19, everything can change on a dime. In the next 42 days, South Africa could again lock down their borders if cases escalate and if coincidentally it falls on the date we’re leaving. Also, India could prevent international flights from entering its borders.

At least, if we knew we couldn’t fly a few days earlier, we could redo our mindset and come up with an alternate plan, hopefully unlike the fiasco we encountered as mentioned above on March 20, 2020, in the middle of the night while exhausted and frustrated.

The shoreline from our condo’s beachfront.

We’ve both decided to temper our enthusiasm with a bit of trepidation and uncertainty in the interim. Over the next few days, we’ll come up with a Plan B, should we be turned away at the airport once again. Once we make that decision, we’ll share it with you here.

To arrive in Marloth Park, Mpumalanga, South Africa, in the late afternoon of January 13, 2021, is, at this point, a lofty dream. Pulling this off may prove to be a challenge. Thus, at this point, we’ll continue to take the necessary steps to proceed with those three flights safely and without incident.

The blooming season in Hawaii has long since passed for some flowering plants and trees.

Even so, one can easily worry about contracting COVID-19 while riding in taxis, at the airports, or while on airplanes. None of this is easy. None of this is fun. But, we cannot stay any longer in strict confinement when on January 12th, it will have been almost ten months.

We can only maintain a glimmer of hope that all will transpire as planned and that we’ll arrive at our blissful destination, full of hope, joyful anticipation, and plenty of excitement.

The bananas in the yard grow bigger each day, soon ready for picking.

A heartfelt thanks to so many of our family/friends/readers for all of the encouragement and support we received on social media, through email, and comments on our site. We appreciate every one of YOU!!!

Be well.

Photo from one year ago today, December 1, 2019:

One year ago, we arrived in Nevada to visit family. Son, Richard is a Vegas Golden Knight’s superfan when he had this mural painted on a wall in his backyard pool area. We’re looking forward to attending a game with him on December 8th. For more, please click here.

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