Monday, March 2, 2009

Efficiency and Travel don't share a lot of letters

Written while waiting for my plane to return to London.

"The confusion which managed to upset me the most was complicated when talking in English. I find this amusing. It wasn't really a big deal. I just thought I needed to find a new line (which didn't exist) to check-in after waiting 25 minutes. I was prone to being confused. I'd already misread my plane schedule and got to the aeroport way, way early (which I suppose is better than way, way late) and thus was tired of being in aeroports. After I talked to another woman and she told me to return to my original line I just began to cry (and maybe mutter a few things to myself about being tired and wanting to just get to London) and the people around me looked extremely worried. I think it was because I was crying and I didn't have anyone with me. I think there was this concern that they were supposed to do something since there was no one else, but it's just harder in the city... plus, a lot of them didn't speak English and that was the language I was muttering in. Either way, the guy who had originally sent me away left his little booth and found me and brought me to the front of the line. He retried to explain- he just did check-in luggage, but the line divided. He had neglected the mention that the first time he sent me away. All was well in the end.
There is something about waiting in airports (the overhead announcements, crying children, lines, beeping security gates, the inability to sleep...) that makes a large percent of people unhappy. I should minimize my time in them. Train stations are-- well, *usually- better.

There was some confusion with my train ticket and I had to order another.
Also I've discovered that on many trains, assigned seats don't really mean assigned to the regulars, but more like-- recommended.

A little advice: If you are in a train, looking for your seat and someone seems to be in your seat, just ask, he/she probably is. I wasted a lot of time checking my ticket, the car, the train, the seat. Then, if they ask if they can trade you seats to sit next to his/her loved one, of course- say yes, but if the car is 8+ cars down and it's almost time for the train to depart, don't exit the train, running down to the car, sprinting as your over stuffed backpack bounces and your bag leaves red marks on your neck, and you just pray the train doesn't leave. Rather, figure out how those doors work. Press the top of the handle to the side and calmly walk car-to-car, like the rest of the intelligent world.
You'll be less sweaty.

No comments: