Tip # 1
Be flexible and believe you will get there.
Even when I think I have my flights and transfers planned and organized something often changes. This time there were mighty changes! I’d booked early on no frills Icelandair at an impossibly great rate from Seattle. From my Island in the sea, I booked my connection with Alaskaair, because it’s rated number one and another great rate. Thanks to my mom, I arrived at the airport in plenty of time but found the flight was late. Hmmmmm. The ticket agent assured me I’d make my flight. On board, delayed some more, and all the people from their next scheduled flight filled our plane. That seemed sketchy. The flight attendant assured me and the lady next to me we,d make our flights.
And then, slowest luggage and body scan in the world in Seattle’s terminal. I ran (sort of) to the Icelandic gate. Don’t leave, I’m here I called out! The gate just closed she answered. But the plane is still right there I said. My connection was late! You missed it by one minute, she said. Oh. I answered… because expletives were too hard to say in that moment.
Is there anything you can do to help me I asked, while looking up to pour the two tears back in. Give me a minute she said. And then, Icelandic wants to charge you the whole fee to rebook for tomorrow’s flight. That’s not very nice, I said. There was a pause. And I said, well, I guess I can try to get on a different flight out tonight. Give me a minute she said. Go sit down. And so I did and trusted the universe.
Finally she said, British Airways, is flying out at 7:40 and you’ll be on that flight but you’ll land at the other Paris airport. Okay I said. Thank-you so much. And I offered her a hug, which she took.
Upon landing at Gatwick, yes that happened, but British Airways was very comfortable and they fed me so I am just filled with gratitude, I found out thanks to a young Brit security guy that my connection to Paris left from some other airport in the city, too far to make it to. A trip to the British Airways desk fixed that and I was off immediately to Paris. All of this change happened at no extra cost to me. Unbelievable really. This little plane was delayed. No problem though, Paris was close.
I found my way around the airport and onto the squishiest subway ever without too much trouble. (Okay, I couldn’t figure out how to work the turnstil pay thing fast enough for the French lady behind me who put her ticket in and pushed me in ahead of her giggling.) And from the station closest I found the entrance to my little (I now know tiny houses are not a thing for me) Air BnB. The hired “friend” who was to meet me there had not given up on me despite me being 45mins later that expected. I was so grateful that he offered to carry my suitcase up the sixth floor walk up. That help was the icing on this cake of a trip. I now know that six floors in France are more like 9 Canadian floors. My training was insufficient! But I did it finishing all huffypuffy.
The “friend” a young guy around 30, didn’t speak any English. He showed me how the apartment worked, it’s as tall as it is wide, and I offered up my French. He laughed, a lot, at my efforts and left in a right jolly mood after showing me how the weirdest room key ever worked, again.
It’s like I said in my last post… people are good and kind.
Fear is highly over-rated. Get out here, be kind, and live your best life.
And so, I’m here. I’ve ridden the hop on and off bus as my sister suggested, I’ve been to Louvre once which was enough and I’ll write about that next, I’ve explored the Luxembourg Palace Gardens once and I’m in love with the place, and I’ve enjoyed the bread without the effects I experience in Canada. So that’s a bit of heaven.