Saturday, 29 July 2017

Return from the Continent

It's great to get away and visit family but it is also wonderful to arrive home safe and sound.
I am just back from nearly a month in Germany. It was very hot - too hot for my liking - most of the time. Lots of thunderstorms, which I enjoy. 
The journey there and back always involves a day's travel. I suppose I shouldn't complain (well actually I'm not complaining, just commenting) because in the days of Jane Austen, the trip would have taken nearly a week. And - staying with Jane Austen, in her novel Persuasion, the heroine notes that matters which were of first importance in one village are of little interest in the neighbouring one, remarking that we should know our own insignificance beyond our own circle. I find this to be the case when I travel from one country to another (perhaps not surprisingly).
My return journey made me think about what travel would have been like two hundred years ago. Boarding in Frankfurt was nearly an hour before scheduled take-off. Once the information on the departure gate was up, off I went. I half expected to see the lights of Dublin since I must have walked miles. I survived the passport check and the hand luggage scrutiny, and even though the scanner did not even so much as hiccup, the grim faced lady on the other side still patted me down, or maybe she liked my capri pants and wanted to check what the material was.... Everyone squeezed onto an airport bus which drove us out to the aircraft. I always maintain that the Aer Lingus airplanes are parked out near the refuse bins. The journey out there is interesting if you like observing traffic at airports. I had had the presence of mind to claim a seat near the rear of the aircraft so managed to get to it without having to wait for those wonderful passengers who root around in their carry-on bags and hold everyone up.The flight was fine. When we got to Dublin, it was another long walk to get to the exit with lots of stairs, which made me wonder what happens if you are a bit shaky on your feet but not ready for wheelchair transport. Next, I took a bus to the railway station (one hour) and from there a train (nearly three hours) and then another bus which should have taken fifty minutes but took well over an hour because of traffic.
Home never looked so good when I finally closed the door behind me. But it was worth it all and anyway, I enjoy travelling. There is the whiff of adventure and glamour, despite all the checks and delays. No matter how often I travel, I still find something new to surprise me.
If you are travelling for your holidays, I hope you have fun!

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