I’ve done a lot of waiting in airports this year, and I think I’ve found a new pass time: watching travellers fudge up going through the security metal detectors. It could be a Monty Python sketch. I’m not alone in enjoying this humorous procession– mum and I are trying to contain our giggles, and the American couple beside me are providing some great commentary and play by play of the poor people confused about whether or not their large metal belts might set off the metal detectors.
Oh my goodness. It’s as though the group of Korean tourists across the room just wanted to entertain me some more– they are asking security if they can have the bottled water in the garbage can that was confiscated after security…and they’ve succeeded! That’s resourcefulness, folks. Sorry for the stream of consciousness post, but it was just too good.
After one wildcat airport security strike, several hours of waiting in Berlin, one missed connecting flight to Madrid, several more hours of waiting (with fingers crossed) on standby in Frankfurt, one missed train from Madrid (another expensive ticket purchased), and one piece of lost luggage (thanks, Lufthansa!), I am finally on my way back to Huelva. I contemplated trying to spend the night in the train station in Madrid last night, but it turns out they really don’t want you to do that — waiting areas and bathrooms were all locked, and the only semi-comfortable place I could find seemed to already be a favourite of older homeless men. So after a friend (very nicely and helpfully) texted me the address of the nearest hostel, I gave up on trying to rough it, gave up my bench and a chocolate bar to one of the guys, and headed out of the station. I’m definitely glad I ‘splurged’ for a bed, even though I was silly and threw all my toiletries in my (lost) checked bag…now, after what’s been about 30 hours of travel/waiting around I am very excited to get out of my grimy clothes and buy a new toothbrush. The joys of traveling!
Mum and I were on the same flight to Frankfurt together before going our separate ways, and despite these travel hiccups that make the process way less fun and a little more stressful, we reminded ourselves of the wonderful time we had just spent together in wintery Berlin — no point in focusing on how I might miss work the next day (I did), or when I’d be rebooked, because there was nothing I could do about it, just go with the flow and be grateful for such a lovely trip. (Besides, she has the time change to deal with that comes with crossing the ocean, I just had to get to Madrid!). When we hugged goodbye hastily as we got off the plane in Frankfurt and she ran through the terminal with other travellers bound for Ottawa I got a little lump in my throat. “Stop it!” I told myself. “You’re 21, have been through many an airport, and you’ll be home for Christmas soon!” So as I waited anxiously at the gate on standby for the fight to Madrid, I took deep breaths and flicked through the pictures of our trip on my camera. We look cold and happy, and the city sparkles with an impressive amount of Christmas lights. I’m so glad that my mum was able to come out and meet me for this little holiday — it was a real treat and I loved all the time I got to spend with her (thanks, mama!).
These are just a few shots from my Instagram account (@kshap17 if you were wondering). I’ve always found that photos are the best souvenirs from any trip, which I guess is a good thing, seeing as all our other souvenirs were packed in my luggage. So I’ll remind myself of these little wunderbar moments with my mum as I now anxiously await my suitcase; there’s a lot of German chocolate in there…