Sunday, February 22, 2009

In Frankfurt Airport; Trip Conclusion

Woke up to an exceedingly gloomy day; it has been raining all night long, and looking outside the hotel room window on 8:30am I could see some seriously grey skies, fog and mist. I quickly organized my backpack, as I was going to go outside to eat and didn’t want to be caught with last-minute packing frenzies.

At 9:30 I made my way downstairs and left the hotel, in search for adequate food. It turns out that Frankfurt of Sunday mornings is much less exciting than Frankfurt of Saturday nights. There were only a few people walking in the streets, a few suspiciously-looking fellows and it took me some time to find a reasonable place to eat.

I ended up eating in a place called “Bagel Brother”. They serve all kinds of so-so bagels for ridiculous money (4 Euros for a tiny lox bagel). Figuring I should better eat now than regret later, I devoured the bagel and made my way back to the hotel.

Attempts to connect my Bluetooth headset to Skype, so I can have a quick chat with my family in Israel, have failed miserably for some reason. I packed my laptop, took a quick look around to ensure I haven’t missed anything and left the hotel.

It’s a short walk to the train station. I was told to take either the S-8 or S-9 trains. Finding the train was a snap, however I did encounter some trouble trying to purchase the ticket through the machine. 5 minutes before the planned departure, I decided to seek help. A nice local has shown me that I was not using the correct machine at all – there’s another machine for the “S” trains right beside it. 3.70 Euros for a train ride directly to the airport.

Somebody in Canada should wake up and start building railways.

Twelve minutes later we arrived at the airport; quickly checked-in using the quick check-in automatic booths, however I wasn’t sure of the quality of the seat I selected. I decided to consult the check-in counter.

The nice lady at the check-in counter told me that my seat is good enough, but moved me to the aisle at the same row just in case. We shared a few laughs, and then I asked the inevitable.

Me: “Who do I have to be nice to in order to get an upgrade to business class?”

She (smiling): “You can only do this at the gate.”

Me: “Who should I be talking to?”

She: “You should be talking to the flight manager.”

Me: “Is it a woman?”

Something in her face told me that her brain was scanning through her English vocabulary, failing to find words to use.

She: “… I don’t know, may be a woman, may be a man…”

Me: “Well, if it’s a woman then at least I stand a chance.”

She started laughing. She checked the occupancy rate of the aircraft, and told me that Economy class isn’t even full so my chances of getting an upgrade are slim, but I should try anyway. I thanked her dearly (she was still laughing) and left.

Went to the bistro I had breakfast in a few days ago to say “hi” to the hostess who asked me to see her before I depart back to Canada.

We met.

I said “Hi”.

She replied with a “Hi” and a smile.

I left.

Back in Cafe Memento, I got a decent cappuccino and started writing this very blog post. No wireless connection here (at least not one that costs less than 8 Euros per 30 minutes) so I’ll upload from home.

Goodbye Europe. Was nice getting to know you. See you soon.