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Dalama Adventures Tale of two corporate types ditching their jobs and traveling the world for 14 months... check out all photos, blogs & interesting tid bits at http://www.dalama.net

24 Hour Transit: Planes, Trains and Automobiles

EGYPT | Monday, 6 August 2007 | Views [794]

It took all day to get from Helsinki to Cairo, thanks to the inconvenient routing of our One World RTW ticket. We were routed through Barcelona for an 8 hour layover, and the Barcelona airport is not the one I'd pick for a long layover. We tried to speak with the Iberia Airlines ticketing office to get some assistance changing the time and dates of our Barcelona to Madrid flight that was scheduled for several weeks later, but the Iberia staff here at the airport is pretty useless with any tickets issued by One World. The benefit of the One World Alliance is that ticket holders should be able to go to any Alliance member airline ticketing desk, and get prompt service to change or amend any part of the ticket. Here at Iberia airport ticketing office, they have no clue how the ticket works, or how to make changes. Or perhaps the agent was just grumpy and annoyed with my minimal comprehension of her ramblings in muy rapido Espanol, and didn't want to deal with me.
So with our 8 hour layover, we tried to mooch a free internet signal, but none were to be found, so we hit up the big airport bookstore, hoping to scam off the Lonely Planet guides there for Morocco and Portugal... do some quick reading and research in the store while we waiting for our flight to board. The store had a fabulous selection of guides - Lonely Planet, Eye Witness, Rough Guides, on every country you could ever imagine wanting to go to. However, slight problem, they were all in Spanish, and our Spanish language immersion program doesn't start until we hit Guatemala in September. So there would be no productive planning done during our layover either. So we found an aisle of available seats with no arm rests in an empty departure game, and we slept for several hours. I wake up with plastic seat creases permanently imbedded in my face, wondering where I am, which country, which guest house, and why are all these strange people staring at me.
Typical to our European trips, we sleep, eat and drink our way through each country, and this day is no different. After our naps, we have a meal, a drink, and finish up some duty free purchase of wine and port for our friends in Egypt - a precious supply that they can't get locally in mostly "dry" Egypt. We arrive in Cairo just after 12:30 a.m. the next morning, and my friend Kim (former NCR housemate from Dayton) is waiting for us with a big smile at the airport. She's even packed beverages and snacks galore for our 2.5 hour drive north to their home in Mansoura, in the Nile Delta Area. I haven't seen Kim in probably 10 years, and seeing her again is just like we left off the last time we saw each other on a San Diego visit she had made. It's going to be great spending time with her, meeting her husband Dennis and her daughter Ella.

Tags: On the Road


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