'Dave, please prepare for landing.'

I got to France on the anniversary of the D-Day invasion and am leaving on the day of the liberation of Paris. I'll be a bit sad to miss all of the television specials, actually.

Got up in the morning, had breakfast, took a taxi to the RER, took the RER to Charles de Gaulle, stood in lines, went through security, stood in lines, got to the gate, stood in lines, sat around forever. No telephones and only one place to get food - where a bottle of iced tea cost 3,15€. Not bloody likely!*

Got on the plane and was seated across the aisle from a WWII veteran who was 81 years old and who had been decorated with the French Legion of Honor medal this summer because he was involved in the D-Day invasion. I know this because I heard it about 71 different times because his wife wouldn't shut up about it.

He was very charming, if your definition of charming is:

charm·ing: (adj.) 1. One who is quite possibly senile and turns his airplane radio up to impossible volumes and does not remove his headphones when people speak to him so he ends up yelling at everyone who talks to him and - worst of all - is listening to some patriotic airplane radio channel and feels a great need to sing along (loudly) but doesn't really know the words so that all we hear is a sort of "mahmahnahla AMEEEEEEEERICA nah la la la la la la la AMERRRRRRICA" at completely unpredictable intervals in such a way that it kind of scares other passengers and makes them think he might be insane.

I don't know about you, but that's not my definition of the word.

So, that was that. We had to pick up our checked luggage in Washington, DC, walk through immigration with it (although our checked luggage was completely irrelevant as they didn't search anything and we just had to fill out forms) then recheck it. It was ridiculous. Then we went on from Washington to Detroit, where I was seated across the aisle from the Paranoid Wolverine, so nicknamed because she's a U-M student and because every time the plane did anything, she started panicking, à la "Are we turning? Haven't we been turning for a long time? We've been turning for a while now. Do you think we're supposed to turn this much?" So... that was fun. We also only had one flight attendant on the flight, which was funny because he was referred to by name instead of as the flight crew.

Due to weather conditions in Chicago, there were a whole bunch of grounded planes in Detroit and we couldn't get a gate. So we walked down the steps of our dinky little plane and up some back emergency exit stairs into the airport. Got to baggage claim, and was collected by Loved Ones Bearing Bubble Tea. Yay. Bubble tea and no more internship!

Isidore reconnected easily to the family Internet connection, dinner was had, Robin visited, some souvenir-presents were unpacked and given and Sarah slept. The end.

–––––
* Except apparently it was bloody likely, because I paid it and drank it.

srah - Wednesday, 25 August 2004 - 10:16 PM
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Comments (2)

gravatar alfie - August 26, 2004 - 11:12 AM -

I want Bubble Tea. :(

gravatar bobby - August 26, 2004 - 1:14 PM -

Welcome Back! And I want to try bubble tea.

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