Beki Grinter

Day 1, Journey to France

In European Union, France on August 10, 2009 at 12:21 pm

So many things to say… so here’s a summary.

First, there’s a good restaurant in the E concourse, MIRACLE. Its called Sky 1 Aloft. I think, that was 20 hours ago.

Air France. Free champaign. Free drinks all night long if you want. Choice of cognac. Free. So that’s the good side. Bad side, absolutely no privileges seem to carry from Delta to Air France. So, we were in economy. And then there was the seats, well mine would have been better if I’d discovered that it reclined further before we started our initial descent into Charles De Gaulle.

Then there was poor William G (surname removed for anonymity). William boarded the plane with two boarding passes. Neither were correct. And then some massive plane wide seat changes began. Within 20 minutes it felt like Keith and I were the only two people on the plane who had retained their actual seats (which of course was because Air France had actually switched our seats once prior to flight, and then again once early in the check in process, long before the rest of the passengers were there, ready to participate in the grand swap off).

A seemingly smooth flight Air France managed to turn into seating chaos. Enter my tag line for Air France. Discoverie le chaos.

And then there’s Charles De Gaulle. The airport where you land and then tour the fields of Roissy, only to get off the plane and on to the bus (a good thing for the bus-workers and their union) to end up finally in the actual terminal, where we clear immigration and get baggage. Then its off to find the TGV. Nothing memorable there except for the three hour wait. And it’s one of those warm French days where air conditioning would be a plus, but of course we don’t have air conditioning.

Now what is memorable is getting on the TGV. K and I happen to get on board with about 8 bazillion Germans, who don’t want to wait… for the people trying to get off to get off. Oddly, since I was waiting, and also in front, it appeared to be an occasion to take their luggage and ram it into my legs. I have bruises. However, this is an unwise move when the lady in question, me, has 3.5 months worth of luggage … yeah… that’s a bag that is its own force for good. A bag that is 43 pounds, with some hard sides and lumpy objects. And in a rush of I’m still awake, how, energy, the bag was it’s own star, wielded in perfection.

TGV. Woah. Awesome. Speedy. Like Eurostar and then a whole lot faster. Very nice. Beautiful sunny day in France too. Summer is here.

Metz. Metz was a whirlwind. Apartment, big, quiet, just outside downtown. First supermarket encounter, no bags to carry food in, at least we knew it was coming. Asked whether I had the store card, a little more confusing. Driving the Renault, well that was K, but he was fearless, we were exhausted and I was not sure how to describe where we wanted to go other than knowing that we had to somehow navigate the Metz one way system.

So, we’re here, we’re eating ham and cheese with baguette. We’re watching Sky News, mainly that’s what there is. But we’re on the Internet, we’ve seen Georgia Tech Lorraine, and well here we are… in a beautiful summer weather.


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