Flight to Morocco

What do you do when you have a flight to catch at 12:40pm and you don’t know whether the airport in question is going to be more like Reagan National (pretty smooth and easy) or Charles de Gaulle (worst ever; think ninth ring of hell)?  You hedge your bets and get your CDG game on.  That way whatever happens will not surprise you, upset you, or cause you to miss your flight.  Because you’re ready for anything.  Including the following:

  • Bus fire in the middle of downtown Madrid rush-hour traffic (not our bus, but we were in the resulting traffic — a delay, yes, but how often do you see bus tires spontaneously combust?)
I wasn’t quick enough to catch the flames —
you can see the white from the fire extinguishers
  • Interminable check-in lines, where you wait for half an hour (barely moving) until you reach a smiling young woman who tells you that you are, in fact, in the wrong line (“But the tv monitor said this was the line” “Yes, that’s why I have to stand here and tell you that it’s actually the other line.”  Smile.)
  • Discovering that your gate is in the terminal that is the furthest point possible in the entire airport complex, requiring trains, buses, and very long walks — so that by the time you get there you wonder if you are still even in Spain (if I were a betting man I’d say it was an unused wing of Charles de Gaulle). 
  • Being carted even further from the gate (by now we’re in southern Belgium) to a tiny airplane, which we board by climbing up a staircase that would have been glamorous if we’d all been wearing 1950s outfits.

There goes my backpack

Terminal T4S

After that, things went super smoothly.  No crash landings in the Atlantic.  No screaming babies.  No inane films.  Which meant I had time to sleep for a minute and then get really excited as we entered the dusty brown world of Morocco.

Deplaning was similarly informal here:  We just walked off the plane and into the airport.  Scratch that.  We walked off the plane into a furnace and then into the airport.  Honestly, I have not been surrounded by such hot air since I hiked through the crater of a volcano in Guatemala.  The weather report said the peak temperature in Marrakesh today was 120 F.  Now take that and go stand on the tarmac for a while.


  1. Anonymous · · Reply

    Wow… So glad you didn't forget your passport. Lady


  2. Me too, believe me!


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