U.S.A. Xmas 2013…a bit of a bumpy start.

Boy, what a trip…On Saturday morning Stefano drove me to the Florence airport where I was supposed to board a flight to Munich (and, from there, a connecting flight to Boston). Well, that didn’t happen…

The Florence airport had basically shut down. All morning. Why? Because of FOG. Yes, fog. I didn’t know this, but if Florence is enveloped by fog, as it was on Saturday morning, all incoming and outgoing flights get canceled. The Lufthansa personnel told me to wait…and so Stefano and I waited…and waited and waited…

Something amusing did happen, though. Between 11 AM and 12:30 PM, as flight after flight got canceled, we’d hear similar announcements from all the airlines, more or less like this one: “Air France regrets to inform all passengers booked on flight blabla, bound for Paris, that the flight has been canceled due to adverse weather conditions. Passengers should report to the Air France desk, blablabla…”

And then, no kidding, about two nanoseconds after EACH announcement, the same loudspeaker voice informed “all passengers that the newly opened cafe’ on the second floor of the airport has a panoramic terrace.” A PANORAMIC terrace. 🙂 I mean, one minute you’re telling me that my flight has been canceled due to fog…the next, that I can go up to the new panoramic terrace on the second floor of the airport to admire…THE FOG. I was mightily amused…

At 12:30 PM Stefano and I finally heard the announcement that my flight had also been canceled, duuuh…By then I knew that I wasn’t going to make that Munich-Boston flight…

While standing in line in front of the ticket desk, waiting to find out what Lufthansa was going to do with me, I began chatting with an Italian guy in front of me…the “where are you headed?” sort of talk. (This is relevant to what happened later in the day.)

In a nutshell, Lufthansa rebooked me on a flight to Frankfurt from Bologna (a city that is about an hour’s drive from Florence), which I reached by shuttle bus with all the other stranded passengers. Note: as we were waiting to board the bus, the fog suddenly lifted, and the sun came out to mock us. 😉 Oh well.

After a long wait at the Bologna airport, I finally boarded the plane to Frankfurt that evening and immediately recognized the guy sitting next to me: the above-mentioned Italian with whom I’d exchanged a few words with at the Florence airport. A welcome coincidence. We spent the entire flight time chatting up a storm. He was on his way to the American Geophysical Union’s congress in San Francisco, so during the flight I learned a lot about earthquakes and volcanos and lava and so on…fascinating, I must say. When we landed in Frankfurt, Lufthansa put us up in the same hotel, together with two other stranded passengers, so we had dinner together. It was nice not to be alone in this unexpected and unwelcome, er, adventure…

I finally got to my parents’ home on Sunday afternoon. Almost 24 hours late. Tired but mainly verrrrrrry happy to see them…And I immediately filled myself up with curcumin and have also been taking my Manuka-curcumin concoction to ward off all the nasties to which I had been exposed this weekend, especially on the Frankfurt-Boston flight…ugh!

So far, so good. I feel fine, and the jet lag hasn’t been bad at all. 🙂

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