Well, we’ve flown the burrow and 24 cramped, foot-swollen and overfed hours later have landed in France.
Cabin crew were attentive, flight was without incident even from the passengers, although there was one group
(and a particular couple within that group) who needed to be noticed and given attention.
“Frequent Flyers” must be able to get an honoury degree in behavioural psychology from oft observing the antics of passengers.
Civilization as concept … there are no modes of consensus behaviour: “I’m first!” seemingly the prevailing orthodoxy.
Customs was interesting, too: every time I had to take off my belt, unpack the computer and dig out the wallet I felt like sonoursly intoning “This inconvenience has been brought to you by Osama Bin Laden and other faithful fruit-cakes.”
(repeat three times in measured Gregorian metre whilst slowly waving you arms back and forth above your head and two-stepping in a circle)
The French Customs looked very suspicious but probably understanding what had happened in Melbourne, Doha and any other feeder-flight people had been on, and wanting to avoid riots, let us through without a hitch. Merci!
After following official instruction, we had a lovely 3 km wander around CDG airport with all our baggage trying to decipher the signage for the location of the TGV and it was only after receiving assistance from Jacque
(a passenger we had seen a couple of times during the flight from Doha) and who coincidentally was also waiting for a TGV, that things were sorted.
Merci beaucoup, Jacque.
Validating the tickets for the TGV (purchased in Melbourne) proved fun… the little yellow machine on the platform didn’t want to do its job so back and forth a couple of times to the TGV office where finally the sweet-young-thing at the counter (after the problem was explained again) said blankly, “What do you want me to do”? “Validation, s’il vous plait ?”, I said. To wit; S-Y-T spreads tickets, grabs stamp and thump, thump “Voila !” And without even the hint of a smile, turns away to look somewhere else.
My first Ms.Hulot moment of funniness….. and I haven’t mentioned the conductor’s antics on subsequent smooth and quiet TGV ride to Dijon.
This is looking like it will be a lot of fun!
Cheers fellow troglodytes,
top: Melbourne depature lounge 21:00 hrs
middle: Airport CDG, Gare
Lower: CDG Gare, TGV platorm building