After our overly ambitious museum day, I was exhausted and was very reluctant to get out of bed. I was eventually convinced to wake up by my lovely companion, Sarah, who bought me a very French breakfast in bed.
Soon it was time to say “Au revoir” to Sarah, who was catching a train deeper into the French countryside while I caught a cab to Charles de Gaulle airport, which still looks a little bit like something from Tatooine. The kind of building that Jabba the Hutt would commission.
My corporate travel agent concocted a convoluted scheme to get me from Paris back to Brisbane. I was to fly Paris to Frankfurt, Frankfurt to Copenhagen, stay a night in Copenhagen, Copenhagen to Singapore, Singapore to Brisbane.
My flight to Frankfurt was a little bit delayed which meant that my arrival time in Frankfurt was later than my boarding call for my connecting flight. However, I did make it to the flight by running to the gate. Unfortunately, my luggage wasn’t as quick as I was and it didn’t make the flight as I discovered when I arrived in Copenhagen. I lodged all the paperwork to track down my bag and, defeated, caught the train back to Anna’s flat.
By this time I was a pretty disgruntled traveller but Anna welcomed me into the warmth and fed and clothed me (literally, because I didn’t have any clean clothes). I had a somewhat sleepless night because I was a little bit sick and more than a little bit stressed out about my lost luggage.
But as things often are, it was much better in the morning. Anna had spoken to a cheery Scottish airline rep who gave her instructions for me to collect my bag before my next flight and made me a coffee ready to face my journey home.
Picking up the luggage was a little more casual than I thought it should be. You just wait around a door and nod when they ask you if you are here to pick up some luggage, and then they let you back into the secure arrivals section of the airport. The girl at the lost luggage desk was very friendly. She reunited me with my bag very quickly and in my giddy relief (and sleep deprived state) I thanked her with the ridiculous sentiment, “It was a pleasure losing luggage with you!”
The flight from Copenhagen to Singapore was quite uneventful. The TV screen at my seat seemed to have a contrast issue so I just went on a Game of Thrones binge on my iPad, taking care to angle the screen away from the little girl sitting next to me to shield her from the naked woman giving birth to demons, numerous decapitations and other unsuitable situations featured in the show.
When I arrived in Singapore, I was really quite eager to have a lovely hot shower, but when I got to the lounge, they had a sign apologising for the hot water being broken. I tried to negotiate a discount for the lack of hot water but ended up having a full-priced icy cold shower. But it was, at least, nice to be clean again.
After refusing to relinquish my aisle seat to a bogan couple who had managed to check in so late that they couldn’t get seats together, I slept soundly during the flight, waking only for the random meals of things like charsui pork and noodles for breakfast.
When I arrived in Australia, I actually managed to get my passport to work through a smart gate. I think the key must be to look absolutely exhausted and dishevelled in order for the computer to consider me and my passport photo a match.
I cleared customs quickly and was very relieved to see Davey waiting for me on the other side of the gate.
I had a wonderful time travelling by myself, seeing geeky train stuff, more castles than I can actually count, two of my very good friends, the view atop some of the world’s most famous icons and the treasures inside quite a few museums, but it was very nice to be home again, and be sleeping in my own bed!