Day Seventeen/ Transit

Trip Start Dec 17, 2011
1
15
25
Trip End Jan 14, 2012


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Flag of Canada  , British Columbia,
Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Today started horrifically early, at 5:30am.  We quickly packed up the rest of our belongings and went downstairs to wait for the bus.  The 6:30am time that we booked the bus came and went, and we started to worry that we would have to run down the mountain to the airport.  Just as we started to search for our booking confirmation, the bus arrived.  The bus driver was a very charismatic, and very knowledgable.  He made relevant and funny quips about the New Zealanders, Australians, Canadians and Americans. We reached the airport with much time to spare, and checked in without any problems.
The airport is so small at Kamloops that you have to check in your bags in the same security machine as you go through later with your carry on.  They just tell you to come back at a certain time when they will change the machine from security for check-in luggage to carry-on luggage.
The flight to Vancouver was very picturesque, and was quick like last time.
The flight attendant at Kamloops organised for our bags to go straight through to Paris, bypassing the pick up that we would've had to have done in Frankfurt. I love Star Alliance!
Once arriving at Vanouver Airport, we went straight to our gate.  There was no security, and no Customs.  We didn't get our passport stamped on the way out of Canada, so we are sitting now, wondering if Canada even knows that we've left.
We sat at our gate for five hours in the airport.  We arranged ourselves into a 'circle of trust' so that our carry-on bags were all together.  The five hours passed surprisingly quickly.  We watched movies, ate lunch from the food court, and all of a sudden, it was time to board.
  The flight to Frankfurt took 10 hours.  Elyse and I were sitting together, and watched movies simultaneously.  I think I may have slept for an hour or two, but it is always difficult to sleep on planes for me.
In Frankfurt, we were surprised with how old and disorganised the airport was.  It was like a minefield to try and get to the next terminal.  You had to take two elevators, and walk in circles.  Going through security took a very long time, as the system was so old.  I really expected in an airport so frequented as Frankfurt to be much more modern, in the same vain as Beijing or Singapore.
We had to say good-bye to Laura here.  She is going to Bourg-Saint-Maurice to stay with her French family and practice more French.  It was sad to say goodbye to her, and I don't think mum will ever enjoy saying goodbye to her babies as they walk in an airport alone.
We boarded the next flight, and I think I slept the whole way.  There was one point where we were served 'Butterstanges', a food that seems to be a mix of a breadstick and a pretzel.  It also had an enormous amount of butter in the middle, which was a little sickly.
We finally arrived in Paris, after travelling for nearly 22 hours. We grabbed our bags, and headed for the exit sign.  We didn't realise that this exit sign exited us to the public pick up.  Again, no customs or security.  It was weird not having my passport stamped for entering the country, or having to declare our duty-free chocolate.  As a European Union country though, we had already been stamped in Germany, and so we don't need to be stamped again.  For neatness of my passport, though, I would prefer to have the country I am staying in for a week to be stamped rather than the country I was in for less than an hour.
We were picked up by our driver, and dropped off at our accomodation, down a little side street, only just big enough for the car.  We were shown through the apartment by the agent, then went out exploring.
It feels very sterotypically Parisen; small alleyways, beautiful architechture.  We seem to be in Little China, where every second store in owned by a Chinese person.
We came back, and then went out for an early dinner.  By this time we had been going for 28 hours. In France, they tend to eat very late, and were surprised by us asking for food at 5pm, but they still allowed us to come.  The food was really good, and gave us more energy to continue. Elyse and Hayey had both fallen asleep in their seats before we left.
Now we are getting ready for bed, as we are so worn out!
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Comments

amandabeet
amandabeet on

Ah Paris - city of love, bet dad won't be letting you all free-range here. We are really jealous now. Make sure you go to the little artists square at Montmatre and have a coffee or hot chocolate under a little gas heater! My favourite thing in Paris was having crepes dripping lemon and sugar from a street vendor in the freezing cold..... Say hi to mum and dad for us. Amanda and Andrew.

katemel
katemel on

I like the sound of 'duty free chocolate'. I hope it's the really good stuff!! Have a wonderful time in 'Gay Paree'

Peter on

Hi Amy.
First blog read as only now got conection to web via new I phone.
Hope ya all well.
Say hi to all from me.
Peter

ronlyn on

How's the weather in Paris? Enjoy
xxx
to all
Nana

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