Pandemic Flight

I could have inserted an image of an airport, or the plane, but I thought the destination would be prettier. Colledimezzo in all its glory, taken today as I enjoyed my first morning walk.
Back to the flight, not as bad as I thought, but not great. My daughter dropped me at the airport in Denver. It was an emotional good bye for me. I miss her!
My Italian residency/ID card was the only documentation I needed to board the flight, other than my passport. Delta airlines did a great job. They kept folks distanced, boarding, and during the flight. More than I could say for other airlines, where folks jostling and pushed to board. I’ll remember how well Delta did during these awful times and fly with them again.
Atlanta was uneventful, but I noticed the airport was not so strict on mask wearing. The international terminal was pretty empty, so I just kept my distance from folks. I’d already completed my documentation allowing me to land in Amsterdam. For those passengers who hadn’t, it was handed out at the gate prior to boarding. Thanks to my daughter I was in first class on this flight. Food was delicious, as was the champagne.
This was the first time I’d flown through Amsterdam. Busy airport, even during a pandemic. My temperature was checked and my documentation stamped before I could proceed to my departure gate.
My flight from Amsterdam to Rome was a little uncomfortable due to an ignorant selfish idiot sitting in the same row as me. Luckily there was an aisle and three seats between us because he wore his mask under his chin and proceeded to cough and sneeze into his hands throughout the flight. He was warned more than once by the flight attendant, but as they say…”you can’t fix stupid”.
I was very relieved when we landed in Rome, and even more relieved to collect my luggage. I always fear it won’t be there.
My husband was waiting for me…I survived a pandemic flight.

Just Let me Fly

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To my friends my retirement plans appear to have gone smoothly. Things just fell into place!
They weren’t back stage watching me manage contractors across the Atlantic. Rising at 5:00 am, translating emails, working with furniture stores, banks, Realtors and trying to understand how to get things done the Italian way.
Luckily for me, the folks in our new village are wonderful, kind, helpful people. We couldn’t have done this without them.
“Oh things have gone so easily for you”
NO! It has taken perseverance.
Now we’re in the final chapter. House sold, furniture donated or sold. This final piece of the puzzle should have been easy. Book a flight and “hey presto” we’re on our way to Italy!!!
Not quite! Thank you Mr. Trump, for not being a great leader, actually for not being a leader at all.
Thank you for making Americans unwelcome in Europe! Luckily for us we have Italian residency and UK passports, but getting a flight from the US to Italy is almost impossible. We’ve had two cancelled already.
This isn’t the fault of Delta Airlines, who have been outstanding and helped us through this mess. I rebooked my flight for the third time yesterday, thanks to the great travel agents at American Express. They went above and beyond to help me. Lets hope the third time is a charm.
It isn’t COVID 19 that is bringing the USA to its knees. It is the way it is being handled, or should I say, not handled. Please Mr. Trump, in your last few months as President, show some compassion and decency to the folks of country you promised to “make great again.”

The Joys of Travel

o-ANNOYING-facebookHome again after three weeks in Italy! The journey back was exhausting. Ten hours from Rome to Chicago and then two and a half hours from Chicago to Denver….feet swollen like balloons. Tired, sad, and then I had to encounter the rudest most arrogant man in Chicago Airport while boarding my flight.

Boarding Group 1 had boarded so the lady at the gate called for Group 2, my group. As I approached to show  my boarding pass a short irritating man waved a ticket in my face and tried to push in front of me. After over fourteen hours of airports and planes, I wasn’t in the mood so I stood my ground. The ticket remained in my face.

“Do you have a problem?” I asked the small irritating man invading my space.

“I’m first. Look my ticket says Group 1” he insisted.

“They’re boarding one and two now and I’m group two” I replied patiently. Really we all have seats booked so I couldn’t understand his issue.

“But I’m group one, I go first, I’m first,” he insisted again.

I seriously wanted to swat him like a fly. If he was ahead of me in the queue, or had been waiting for a while and accidentally missed the boarding call, I’d have let him go.

I turned back to him “if you are so eager to board the flight before anyone else you need to get in line a little earlier.” I said.

The annoying little man turned red and gave a nervous laugh. I guess he’s used to getting his own way…..not this time. I honestly couldn’t care less who boards before me, but really, the “I’m first” attitude got my back up.

OK, I’m done, thanks for letting me vent.

Tempus Fugit

 

My little girl is in the air tonight. She’s flying to Germany, the place she was born thirty years ago. Why am I crying? Maybe because I feel old!

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HOW TIME FLIES!

The Joy of Flying!

Why is it over twice as much to fly to Cabo San Lucas right now, than it is to fly to Puerto Vallarta?

Look at the map! It doesn’t look like there is much difference between the two, yet a flight to Puerto Vallarta is under four hundred dollars. A flight to Cabo is over seven hundred!

Also, while we are on the subject, why does one airline charge $700 for the flight, and another over a thousand. What a crazy world we live in! I always travel United or Frontier. I have flown Virgin and Continental on occasions too. None of them stand out as being better than the other. (unless you are lucky enough to get a free upgrade that is).

Lovely Cabo San Lucas

 

 

 

 

 

 

It’s not fair that we should have to shop around so much just to get a reasonable flight. We memorize little systems (convincing ourselves they work). If you want to fly to Europe, book your flight on this day of the week. Mexico is more reasonable on another day of the week, etc. etc.

Nuevo Vallarta (Puerto Vallarta)

I love to travel, and do it as often as possible, but sometimes, the flight spoils the whole vacation because of delays, seating issues and the whole boarding process. Not many of us can afford to fly first class. Economy plus is the best I can afford. Its a little more comfortable, but only because of the leg room.

What happened? Flights used to be more fun.

Most stewards and stewardesses are pleasant and helpful, but always look jaded.

I love to travel, but I HATE TO FLY!

BEAM ME UP SCOTTY!

If you want to read a short amusing story  on your next flight, just take your mind off the uncomfortable hours in the air, check out my novella’s, maybe they will help make your journey more enjoyable. E-books are less than a dollar and paperbacks slightly more:

Washington Dulles

Here I am sitting in Washington Dulles airport. I have to sit in this dowdy place for another three hours. While I am here I can at least share some more photos. Yesterday I took some time to myself while Lester and Jo went to the National Gallery. I wanted to pursue my other hobby…photography, so I took the tube to Tower Bridge and wandered.

Houseboats on the Thames

The area surrounding London Bridge has changed since we left sixteen years ago. There are still a few houseboats, but the area has been built up and looks very classy.

New buildings across the river from the Tower of London

I wandered around for an hour or so just enjoying the view and snapping photos. The sun was actually shining, although there was still a cold wind.

Tower Bridge

We all met back at our hotel and collected our luggage from storage ready for our final night in a hotel at Heathrow Airport. I will blog about this hotel on my other blog, as I think it deserves a ‘Horror Story’ review.

We did spend a pleasant evening with our friends Gail and Graham, who we last saw in Paris in 1977. When friends live so far away, you see them when you can, and enjoy their company to the full when you see them.

Now here we are in Dulles Airport, awaiting our flight for the last leg of the return journey.

Back to work on Friday!

 

 

Air Traffic ‘Out of Controllers’

Fancy Control Tower

This is a pretty fancy looking Air Traffic Control tower. It looks like it would be run by very efficient experienced personnel.

This is the Air Traffic Control Tower in Sydney and I am sure they have never had any problems. When you think of all the planes in the sky, day and night, I think the air traffic controllers generally do a good job.

I say generally because as we all know, over the past week there have been three incidents reported where these guys have not done such a good job. It makes us all a little nervous about flying.

Ode to the Controllers

In about five weeks I board my plane,

To fly across the pond,

Please watch my  flight, and let it remain,

Safe in the big blue beyond.

Whey I am flying in the sky,

The pilots take good care,

They keep me safe, don’t want to die,

Or even get a scare.

So come on guys, don’t make me frown,

Put your DVD’s away,

Concentrate on your instruments and get me down,

So I can live another day.