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…to Chicago

Posted by in Travel Nightmare

This was a doozy. Scheduled for a Monday morning flight landing in Chicago at 1pm, I received a series of texts from Lufthansa rescheduling me through London (3 hour delay) and then Rome (6 hour delay) – all due to a storm that was forecast to hit Northern Europe the next day. Knowing my chickens (as the Italians say), the last thing I wanted to do was get stuck in Rome, and so I began calling Lufthansa offices in order to better understand my options. Italy : no answer. Germany…read more

…from San Francisco

Posted by in Travel Nightmare, Uncategorized

What’s the worst thing you can imagine happening to your plane? Late arrival? Blocked toilet? How about exploding engine mid-flight? It was already 10pm when we took of from SFO -> Munich, so we could see the flames engulfing number 1 engine as a series of explosions shook the fuselage. There were a lot of “Oh God, oh God”-s and the girl next to me went into full panic attack and required restraining. I broke the rules and wrote a short note to the wife. Fortunately the captain was able…read more

…from NY

Posted by in Travel Nightmare, Uncategorized

After a good couple of days in Brooklyn that included an evening at Flushing Meadow to see Serena Williams and Federer… …Alitalia went on strike – delaying my Rome -> Genova flight for 9 hours. Groovy. Best option : train. Rome Airport -> Rome -> Milan -> Genova. 6 hours. Then taxi to Genova airport to pick up the car, and finally home.

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…from Detroit

Posted by in Travel Nightmare, Uncategorized

This one was particularly memorable. The first leg of my 7pm flight Detroit -> Chicago -> Munich -> Genova was delayed due to storms in NY where the plane was coming from. This meant missing the international flight, so United changed my itinerary to Detroit -> Chicago -> Copenhagen -> Munich -> Genova with an arrival delay of just 4 hours. So far so good. Next, SAS cancelled the Copenhagen flight before I made it out of Detroit. Back into the queue for the service desk. To cut a very…read more

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“Open Up – This is the Police”

Posted by in Travel Nightmare

Mostly my stays in hotels are OK.  I occasionally have to go back down to the lobby when my keycard doesn’t work, or (like this week in Munich) I get less sleep than I’d like because thousands of Oktoberfesters sing in the street until the early hours.  Like I said – not a big problem. Sometimes though shit happens that not only ruins the trip, but also makes you wonder if we aren’t living in a simulation… A couple of weeks ago I visited Chicago – a splendid city that…read more

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To San Jose…

Posted by in Travel Nightmare

This is more of a boast than a beef.  I may have set my new record for ridiculous business travel.  OK check this out : Monday Genova -> Rome -> Detroit -> Phoenix Tuesday -> Salt Lake City -> San Jose Wednesday -> Cupertino -> Santa Cruz -> Los Angeles Thursday -> Paris -> Genova

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…to Chicago

Posted by in Travel Nightmare

Voltaire wrote in his poem “La Bégueule” that “Le mieux est l’ennemi du bien”. Sometimes perfection is the enemy of the good; and in my attempt to arrive in Chicago at a perfect 1pm (waking at 4.30 and connecting through 3 cities), I ended up in Frankfurt, delayed for 6 hours. It’s a common story, but frustrating nonetheless. A relatively tight connection, a slightly delayed flight, and UTTER INCOMPETENCE from ground crew, and my productive day turns into a waiting game. In this case I was first off the plane,…read more

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…to Baltimore

Posted by in Travel Nightmare

OK, so this one was my fault.  A miscalculation. I live about half an hour from my local airport, and typically wake up about 90 minutes before the 6am flight leaves. Except this morning the alarm rang 30 minutes before departure and I set a new record : bed to gate in 20 minutes, boarding pass in hand. I’d called ahead and the amazing front-office personnel at the airport fast-tracked me through security, only to see the gate shut in my face. If you live in a country for any…read more

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…to Orlando

Posted by in Travel Nightmare

I live in a great Italian town with one giant flaw : it’s a shitty place to fly out of, with direct connections limited to a handful of cities a few times a week. To get to Orlando, I therefore had to drive to Milan, and fly through Frankfurt – something like a 17 hour trip door-to-door. Our commentary starts at hour 4, sitting on the plane in Milan : “Goodmorning ladies and gentlemen. Welcome to this Lufthansa flight to Frankfurt. We are delighted to welcome you on board. We…read more

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