Paris CDG to Rome Fumiciano
About 30 minutes before the flight leaves, they announce the flight is boarding. I head to the gate. There are alreay long lines to board. Usually in Europe they don't board by row and it's one big free for all. The line I am in is going no where. It seems that someones paperwork is not in order. We wait on one line while the second line moves along. Finally they ask the problem passenger to step aside.
When I get up to the counter they takes my ticket, which was issued in Newark, and ask for my eTicket receipt. ???? Huh? The agent says I should have a receipt. I have nothing.
Oh my god, now I'm the problem passenger.
I give him everything I have in my ticket jacket and he searches for my info on the computer. Finally he finds it and I board the plane. I stuff my bag in the overhead and sit down. Wait, now I remember he didn't give me back any of my paperwork. That included my claim checks for my luggage.
I get up and go to leave the plane and the flight attendants tells me I cannot leave. After explaining my issue they "escort" me back to the desk and I retrieve my paperwork which is still on the counter.
As a result of this escapade I am now jittery. The 2 cappucinos that I guzzled in the lounge didn't help. What else will I forget or lose in the next 7 days?
Business class on European flights is not as luxurios as on American airliners. The seats are typical coach style seats with the center seat blocked out. I don't think there is any extra legroom. I am in the bulkhead seat so I have plenty.
This flight is on a smaller Airbus A320. It's just a 2 hour flight. I am tired. Maybe I can get a short nap. The trick for the rest of the day is to try to stay awake, then get a good night sleep. I planned my arrival in Rome on a Sunday because I knew I would only have half a day and on Sunday a lot of place are closed. Remember these are Catholics! In any event I will use the day to wander, have some dinner and, of course, gelato.
As we take off I really consider how lucky I am to be able to travel. I have also been lucky to fly these trips in business or first class using frequent flyer miles. This year I earned over 110,000 frequent flyer miles from United by having Premier Executive status. I also have a bunch of miles on Delta and Virgin Atlantic. This trip cost me 80,000 on Delta plus $60. It's also cost me a lost pair of $300 glasses. Go figure.
On todays flight they are serving lunch. I was kinda hoping for breakfast. For the meal we got some cold duck breast with a marinated vegatable salad, a baguette with butter and cheese and some pineapple. I love duck, but right now the thought of cold duck and camembert chese is turning my stomach which thinks it's 5.50am in the morning. I also don't know how hungry I am for cheese since I had about a pound of it on the flight to Paris.
Actually the few bites of the duck meat I had are pretty good. It tastes like cold bloody roast beef. Duck is the type of meat that you have to be prepared to eat. It is very rich. It surprises me that they serve it on an airline flight. The strangest (and best) food I ever had on an airline flight was roast goose on a Lufthansa flight. I have also had venison on one of my other Air France flights.
I am always a little careful what I eat when I am on a jet. Typically the food gives me an acid stomach. I think that flying, travel stress and food don't mix well for me. Since leaving Newark I have already had 4 Maloxx tabs. Funny, as I poked through my bag I found 3 rolls of Maloxx tucked in the pockets. One would think I have issues.
Oh my god, do I have issues?
Right now we are flying over what looks like the French or Swiss Alps. The snowcapped mountains are really beautiful. I would take a photo but my camera is in my bag in the overhead bin.
(45 minutes later)
We are now flying over Italy and scheduled for an on time arrival. We will be landing in a few minutes.
Welcome to "I heart rome".