The problem with our last vacation stop being Dubrovnik and my daughter having spent a semester in Geneva with clothes and acquisitions and other belongings is that you can't just get on a plane in Dubrovnik and then just end up at home later that same day.
For one, Dubrovnik airport is a little primitive, barely serviced by any airlines at all and somewhat poorly run. It's also way out in the boonies but that's irrelevant except in that it was raining, the roads were mountainous and our taxi driver seemed way too brave for my nerves, but I think that's probably a cliche.
The trip back to Geneva wasn't going to be fun anyway: out of Dubrovnik at 06:55 which is early no matter how you count it, to Dusseldorf then Zurich and then Geneva. The fine people at Dubrovnik airport would not, as is customary at every other airport I've ever been, issue us with all three boarding passes. I was worried since our Dusseldorf layover was only fifty minutes.
It was raining as the plane took off.
Still saw a pretty island from the air though.
Turns out that Dusseldorf airport is unfortunately not the stereotypic model of German efficiency that one would hope for. Despite announcements and signs to the contrary, there was in fact NO way to simply go to the appropriate gate for our connecting flight and get boarding passes there. Instead there was a hurried rush through passages and up and down staircases and doors that would stay open only for a second or two, and panicked encounters with various ground staff, heightened by the nuisance of having to pass security AGAIN after having bought liquids after passing security in Dubrovnik, and being ever more certain that our luggage was doomed to have its own private travel plans.
This fear was not entirely unfounded since two out of the four pieces did go missing.
We had the excellent kebabs that we were too rushed to get last time we were here.
Jennica's suitcases were retrieved from her friend's apartment without incident.
We had a dinner which, while more expensive than most of the meals of the last two weeks, did not actually break the bank, was very tasty and allowed us to see part of old town.
Both lost suitcases showed up at our hotel.
Departure from Europe went as well as could be expected: no flights were late, no suitcases were lost, and US Customs and Immigration, while not exactly effusive in terms of welcoming us home, didn't give us a hard time.
The cats, on the other hand, were a bit overwhelmed by the sudden influx of people. Anubis warmed up pretty quickly, but Isis took longer, making sure that we understood the extent of her displeasure at being abandoned.
Eh, she'll get over it.