Arriving In Paris

April 2, 2012

When I landed in Paris, I get off the plane and I start following signs for baggage claim. Now there is a distinct possibility that they told me which carousel my bags were going to be at but those instructions were in French, if given at all. So I just keep on walking.

A woman with two dogs was in the terminal and the dogs were leashed outside their cages. They were rapidly lapping water. One of the dogs had shit on the ground and a girl — about 9 years in age — had just stepped in shit. Welcome to Paris.

Despite what my printed statement from Icelandair said, I was on the 4:30 p.m. flight to Paris instead of the 2:30 p.m. flight. I was delayed even further. And instead of flying Icelandair to Paris, I was on an AirFrance flight. Which was unfortunate because, AirFrance didn’t know I was delayed three-hours in Seattle, missed my connecting flight, had to spend the night in Iceland, and had a different (and later) flight than what was promised. I was just another person on the plane and was not afforded any extra benefits.

I arrived from the train tunnel about 7:00 p.m. The sun was glorious. Emerging from the tunnel I entered a world of speeding cars and motorcycles, hundreds of people in the square and in cafes and others just power walking with purpose, and I had no idea which way was even north to orientate me to which direction I should even walk toward. So I just walk. I find a quiet spot, turn on my phone, and inputted my hotel into google maps. I packed light, but dragging my suitcase across cobblestone for more than one kilometer tested my arm strength. And it felt like it was going to fall off.

I checked into my hotel, dropped my bag off and I just walked — in no particular direction. Seeing the Eiffel Tower with the setting sun behind it, I knew I had arrived.

Highlights in Brief:
1. My AirFrance flight — The French know how to travel. Choice of two baked French goodies, coffee (albeit just NESCAFÉ) and water. And this just being a one hour flight.
2. Finding my hotel.


One comment

  1. Great reading this and seeing the pictures on FB. There’s nothing like emerging from the tunnel into Paris to kick off a trip. That city is so cinematic; it’s like the whole scene was put on earth for your particular pleasure.

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