Friday, January 9, 2009

Mal Voyage

I left RDU airport 3:00 pm Tuesday, January 9th. Very strange and sad to leave but very exciting all the same. Arrived at the gate to realize that a good amount of UNC students had similar travel plans, which made me feel better about the sketchy situation of traveling on the AVE train from Madrid to Sevilla. It shouldn´t have. Pretty rough flight from RDU to Boston in terms of turbulence. Arrived in Boston and discovered that we had about 45 minutes to travel to a different terminal, go through security and get to our gate. Which is why I left my laptop at a security point. It has been found and should soon be recovered but it was a high point of stress when I woke up at the end of our flight to Madrid to realize it was gone. Of course I assumed then that it was stolen after all the talk about watching your stuff closely and the petty theft in Spain but no, it was merely my stupidity, which I should´ve guesssed. BARELY made it to the plane from Boston to London but we did indeed make it to the luxurious British Airways flight. And I´m not kidding about the luxurious. Did I have two free glasses of wine on the flight? Yes. Did I have a personal t.v. on the back of the headrest in front of me that played movies the whole time? Yes. Did they serve some pretty good food? Yes. Only problem was I didn´t sleep at all. We arrived in London. Coop almost sat on a person sleeping at the Heathrow airport. Andrea and I split a delicious sandwich at 6 a.m. We then waited for about an hour and half to get on our next flight to Madrid. Of course, our pilot decides that we should wait an hour for some passengers that are running late. Nevermind the rest of the passenger´s plans. I slept the whole way except for a brief period when I eavesdropped on 8 year olds speaking Spanish and English. I´m so jealous of people who grow up bilingual. Arrive in Madrid an hour later than we were supposed to (12:30), I suffer from a heart attack and we then wait for our luggage that never came. Spoke with the baggage claim people. No we don´t have a permanent address to send the suitcases to, no we don´t really have a telephone number for anyone to contact....Coop and I had a train to catch at 3:00 and we left on a metro for the train station at 2:10. So Philip and others had made it seem it would be easy to take the metro to the AVE train station. Um, no. Of course, they should´ve known that Coop and I do not speak Spanish fluently, have terrible senses of direction and we functioning (barely) on 0 sleep. Long story short, we ran around metros asking people for help, exchange our 3:00 tickets for 4:00 tickets, made the 4:00 train at 3:52 and collapsed. And all the while I´m freaking out about my laptop. I´m fairly positive at this point that it´s at the Boston airport but really pissed at myself for being such an idiot about losing things (per usual). We arrive at the hotel at 6:30 and we are just happy that we made it alive.

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