Monday, July 02, 2007

Chapter 1 Part 2- Joburg to Paris

Welcome back, good to see you! ;-)

So there I was, cramped and suffering on a Delta Airlines (operated by Air Fance) flight to Paris Charles de Gaulle (or however you spell his name) airport, I was more than looking forward to getting on my connecting flight and getting on my way to NY!

We land on time at Paris and we all dismebark into surprising crisp morning air. I glance at a map of the airport as I exit the jetway- its huge and I am in Terminal 2E....I need to get to terminal 2F which seems just a short walk away, easy peasy...NOT SO.

We are herded to a bus stop, no air trains here, we have to take a bus to our terminal...ok, I think how bad can this be! Well, it was Sunday so I think we got the C team of the airport staff- a crazy middle-aged French women was driving our bus and screamed at us everytime we came to a terminal in rapid-fire French. The map seemed so simple i thought as we veered left and right through the back roads of the airport, dodging luggage buggys and various pieces of discarded equipment- if the plane journey was hell, Paris airport was purgatory.

When we finally got to the terminal (I had been standing on a swerving bus for the better part of 20 minutes-lord knows how people with only a few minutes to spare manage to get to their connecting flights!) We had to take an elevator to the third floor, then walk through a maze of corridors, up stairs, down stairs, up escalators and across travelators- it struck me that whoever designed this airport probably never actually walked through it....

When i finally made it to the main departure hall I thought I had was only half-way. The main arrivals hall at Charles de Gaulle is the biggest load of wank I have ever seen. It is an empty, austere place with wooden floors and a wooden ceiling of some synthetic looking wood that towers about 5 stories above funtionality whatsoever.

Then we get to the security, bear in mind that I havent been outside of the controlled area, been screamed at by a mad French bus driver, walked 6 kilometres but actually only covered about 200 metres as the crow flies and now some French guy asks me in broken english to remove my shoes!!!!!!


I was pissed off....

Another 3 kilometres i make it to the departure gate with an hour to spare....but without any Euros I couldnt buy anything so I just sat there and waited for my flight to leave.

The flight to NY was a daylight was uneventful except for the fact we were delayed because of technical difficulties....this is always a scary thing to hear and I looked out of my window to see a gaggle of ground staff staring at out starboard engine....not good, I just fell asleep again, at least I had the seat next to me free!

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