Sunday, December 5, 2010

Weather angst

Oh the weather rage I’ve felt this weekend. You’d think with this blog I’d be all loved up and hippy with the weather (take it easy man, it’s just rain!) but no. I am not immune to turning on the weather, using a tone normally associated with seamen, when it comes to the weather adversely affecting my TRAVEL.

I found myself in the setting that has been the inspiration for so many movies, spoofs and reality TV shows, my plane was delayed indefinitely due to snow. I was stuck for what felt like an entire weekend in the multi travelator sporting, limited food but abundance of fragrance offering airport of Schiphol in Amsterdam. Oh the rage. You know the completely debilitating feeling you have when everything is happening TO you and you can do nothing about it? Had it. And the boiling discomfort and frustration, mixed with anxiety that you’re going to miss something crucial if you even go to the toilet? Had that too. I also cursed the day I had ever seen snow and decided it had no real positive benefit on any of nature's ecosystems, so why the hell did it exist in the first place. The very weather activity which you’ve previously read about in glowing, nay nostalgic, posts in this blog became the one reason I didn’t get home until three in the morning, my bestie didn’t make it to a fantastic girls weekend and why I met and had actual dialogue with about 12 random people.

Lets look at some of the players in my little skit, shall we? Me, solo, on 4 hours sleep, getting more and more depressed with each increasing hour, but generally the silent extra. The very angry, profanity favouring, regional English lass (lets call her Louise), the smart, well dressed London male duo coming back from holiday and the group of four Australian 20 somethings heading back from a week of memory loss and greening out.

Louise, for the most part, was the protagonist. She partook in aggressive public conversations with airport staff about the estimated departure for our flight, vocal calls for a mini revolution from those of us not participating, constant pleading for someone to accompany her to the smoking room and finally divulged her life story, played out pantomime style. We were the for 5 hours and her fly was down the entire time.

The male duo were the supporting cast by taking it upon themselves to constantly update the group via the British Airways website and a slowly decreasing in power iphone. They also walked really fast around the airport, doing laps of the perimeter. They were, to be fair, quite handy. And fit.

Our Australian quartet showcased in a bit part, mostly entertaining for having one still ‘greening out’ mate who fell asleep on an airport buggy for three hours and then awoke thinking they had made it to London. The others showed their skills by joining Louise on one of her infamous trips to the smoking lounge, only to leave their luggage there. Luckily the males were on hand to fast walk them back.

Ultimately the very frustrating and inconvenient night turned into an epic story I’ve told at least three times since. Here I am telling it in part to you! Why do we love these stories? We wouldn’t normally take relish in retelling an event that at the time was filled with such frustration, but weather travel stories are generally hilarious. We might not be laughing when we’re in them, but the aftermath can become some of our best material. We’re faced with adversity, we prevail, and the Louise’s of the world become some of the funniest shit we’ve told at the pub.

So I can’t be all hating on the inclement weather, it’s time to change the attitude and have a little foresight. The next time you’re stuck in snow, floods, an insane tornado, get through the angst but remember to take notes. In the retelling, it’s all in the details.

London tomorrow, we are slowly experiencing that deep winter chill where 5 degrees feels balmy. Tomorrow will NOT be tshirt weather.

1 comment:

  1. Babes! The snow sucks. Sorry I missed our gals weekend. See you in Berlin soon?

    Also a friend of mine went to see Sharon and David in Munich. She doesn't drive so got a lift back from a car sharing site. It took her 15 HOURS to get back and her driver was a fundamentalist Christian who spent the entire time trying to convert her.