It is literally, a long way.
On a good Monday morning, we left out home in Heredia and headed to the airport. Before that we had already seen our flight marked as “cancelled” but well, we still need to go there. After all the dramatic farewell and hugs with my relatives at the airport, our flight was indeed cancelled. A long queue and no further questions, we boarded a bus to to the BW Irazu hotel, which is between the SJO Airport and downtown San Jose.
First impression was, bad start for a return trip but a nice hotel room with a pool and 3 meals included? Can do. For one day. Few hours later we were told through a notice board that the flight had been re-scheduled to two days later. And then we were told by the hotel that we need to change to another room tomorrow. Wonderful, we thought we did not have to re-pack again.
Since San Jose is not that interesting a city and we had reached the saturation point in this journey, the extra two days were not really a bonus paid holiday. The 6 meals offered by the hotel were to be consumed in the two restaurants next door, who only serve American/junk food (i.e. lots of meat and soft drink) and are ridiculously overpriced if you want to order food outside of the fixed guest menu. We actually skipped the 6th meal because we started to have stomach problem after 5 meals of junk food.
Vegetarian sandwich we prepared for the original flight:
Two days later, we finally boarded our first flight out of three. The SJO airport is actually quite nice and there is free coffee and chocolate tasting offered by Britt after the security check. Good stuff! The San Jose to Santo Domingo ride took less than 3 hours and economic passengers could watch one the four films available. Before taking off, the Captain took time to tell us the reasons of the flight cancellation, mostly about the technical errors and logistical problem they had during the last 48 hours.
The second flight was a good 9 hours and the Captain also tried to explain the delay before take-off. In contrast to the first Captain, she described the plane as an emotional lady (i.e. a bitch?) and no single person should be blamed for this unfortunate incident. It was an awkward monologue, especially words from a female pilot, and I wondered why the airline did not let the captains have a more unified speech. The choice of entertainment for economic passengers were now down to TWO films, but thanks to our 48-hours delay we have full access to the paid system as a compensation.
The last flight is a short trip between Frankfurt and Berlin, with the ever shining sun in the Northern Hemisphere this year, Berlin looks clear and massive.
So here we are, Berlin. Lots of things had happened, or had not happened, and we are not the same anymore. All in all, we are glad to be home.