Oh, No! Not Again!!!

Trip Start Apr 18, 2010
1
15
47
Trip End Jul 07, 2010


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Flag of Spain  , Catalonia,
Sunday, May 9, 2010

(Sigh) I'm beginning to hate travel days….. Another Sleazy Jet encounter? No, this time I was going to have to deal with another regional airline, Vueling. They had slightly more relaxed luggage travel restrictions (23kg total) and less expensive overweight fees (10€/kg), but according to Easy Jet my luggage weighed 28kg so I was still going to have to pay. So, I decided to try to lighten the load a bit by getting rid of some of my heavier items I could do without including a big bottle of my favorite shampoo which was pretty heavy.

While I was packing I had the Spanish news on TV, and all of a sudden they had some breaking news and went live to the Barcelona airport. From what I could make out in Spanish all the airports in northern Spain were closed due to yet another giant volcanic ash cloud from Iceland. Of course I immediately panicked since I was leaving for the airport in the morning to catch my flight to Ibiza. I ran down the street to the bus station to try to find out what was happening. Nobody spoke a word of English or knew anything! I then ran from shop to shop asking anyone I could find with a TV on if they knew anything but none of them spoke English or had any idea what was happening either! Finally in desperation I ran over to the cafe with the free WiFi which was closed but the signal was still on. There was no mention about the closures on the websites of either the airport, airline, or Spanish news sites. I finally found an English press release on a Thailand news site of all places saying the airport would be closed until at least midnight. So, all I could do was head to the airport in the morning as scheduled and hope for the best.

The next morning as we approached the airport by bus I could see planes taking off which was a very good sign. Now all I had to do was deal with Vueling. I went to the checkin counter, placed my luggage on the scales, and began to take out my credit card in anticipation of getting screwed yet again with overweight fees. To my surprise the woman just handed me my boarding pass and said "Have a good flight!" I was shocked. I said "How much does my luggage weigh?" She said "It's ok, thank you!" WTF? Now I know my bottle of shampoo did not weigh 5kg, so either she let me slide on whatever extra weight I had, or Sleazy Jet's scales are off in their favor to screw travelers.

With the airport operating normally, my flight on schedule, and not having to pay any luggage fees, I was feeling much better about my travel day. So, with plenty of time until my flight I decided to check out the airport and grab a bite to eat. The Barcelona airport is brand new and HUGE! It has a gigantic mall inside with dozens of shops and plenty of food choices. I almost did it! I almost broke down and ate at McDonald's, but then I said to myself "No, I'm here to experience Europe". So I decided to eat at a really nice European deli. I grabbed some kind of basic sandwich they had already made and a bottle of coke. $15!!!!!

For those of you playing along at home, take a bottle of coke out of the fridge and let it sit out for about 45 minutes until it's barely cold. Then take 3 slices of bacon (Unless you can find cured Iberian Jamon), cook them for about 1 minute then let them cool to room temperature. Buy a small French Baguette and make yourself a sandwich with the bacon and bread. No cheese. No mayo, mustard or sauces. And No lettuce, tomatoes, or other veggies. Finally to complete your experience, reach into your wallet or purse and take out a $10 and $5 bills, walk outside, and set them on fire. There you have it! A little slice of Europe, right in the comfort of your own home. Enjoy!

I made it to Ibiza ok, but then getting to my timeshare on the other side of the island proved to be it's own logistical nightmare. I ended up having to take 2 different busses jam packed with locals, and a taxi to get to my resort, but I finally made it. Ah, paradise at last….. Or is it??????
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