Tuesday, July 19, 2016

Chit Chat #16 'The Terminal Part II'

I recently announced on Twitter that I was making "Chit Chat: The Terminal Part II." Here is the story for you to enjoy and for me to now laugh about:

Around 17.00 on a rainy Sunday, I was picked up to drive to the airport at Budapest. It was a one-hour drive where I showed off my microscopic Hungarian dictionary and practiced The Holographic Principle. It wasn't a private concert or anything. I am currently listening to THP on a daily basis to slowly start memorizing the lyrics.

My flight was at 21.15 and I was way too early at the airport – a lot of hours to kill. After some coffee, Mr. & Mrs. Smith, and veggie sticks with hummus, I saw the flight was delayed. 21.50 which then turned into 22.05, and in the end 23.30.

After a tediously slow boarding process, I thought we could take off. I had a kind taxi driver waiting to pick me up from Stuttgart. Oliver had to call him several times to move up the appointment.

"Ladies and gentlemen, may I have your attention please." Here we go... "There has been a problem with the seating of the passengers, and we have to double check that everybody is sitting in the seat that was assigned to them."

My initial thought was someone with bad intentions might have got on the plane. Around 23.30 the plane took off – I had a weird feeling the whole flight.

During the flight, the stewardess announced that we were not allowed to land in Stuttgart anymore, because it was after midnight. We were set to land in Cologne...

The ambience on the plane was tense and of course some people showed their discontent. I stayed calm as long as I could, but behind me a group of women around the age of 50 were yapping so loud and making jokes. I almost couldn't take it anymore. I remained calm, trying to think of solutions on how I could get home.

Normally a flight company will offer a hotel stay and rebook a flight for you – this was not the case for us. After we landed at 1.00 AM, we were sent to the check-in counter of German Wings. A lady was waiting to give us information on how we all would get home.

German Wings offered us a bus, which held only 56 seats (the people on the plane were at least triple that amount), the train, or a rental car. No hotel, no new flight, no taxi drive (if we could find a taxi driver crazy enough).

A kind guy, who sat in my row, offered to get a rental car together and drive to Stuttgart. I was a bit hesitant, which is totally normal – I didn't know this guy. Soon after, my direct neighbor also wanted to join with his wife. That made four and off we went.

Onto Europcar. A lot of people thought it was better to take a rental car than the train or bus where seats were limited and the drive would take longer. The line was long. The guy behind the counter almost finalized the first contract to then find out he didn't have the card to get the cars out of the parking spot...

We were told to take a taxi to Bonn and get a car there, so we did, and got a nice rental. Both guys took turns driving with the help of energy drinks and chips. Lindsay and I started talking about everything and exchanging our travel experiences in other countries. The drive went by fast.

At 6.45 we arrived in Stuttgart, all looking and feeling like zombies. We went our separate ways after returning the car to Europcar and took the train back home.

Another journey with a delayed arrival. I met nice people and "hitchhiked" for the first time in my life.

Thanks for bringing me home guys!


Simone

Me with Opher, Lindsay, and Mikael

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