Tuesday, 31 January 2012

There and back again!

It was a quick trip but we finally managed to pick up our VIPERs at the Brazilian embassy in London! YEP! It only took 9 ½ months since the day Alistair arrived in Rio.
This time we flew with Air France because the flight arrived early morning in London and we wanted to drop our visas at the embassy on the same day.
Well, the flight to London was pleasant enough in Premium Economy! Actually of all the companies we tried so far on that route, they have the best food by a long shot!
The flight back was another story.
We could not get our boarding passes for the Paris to Rio flight  from London. The staff at Heathrow seemed totally clueless and disorganised.
When we got to Paris we had just an hour to pick up our next plane… except that the aircraft doing that route had broken down… people were bumped into a smaller plane. Some people were booted out of the plane totally and put into the next one (the following day!)  We were downgraded to Economy. On top of that it was complete chaos. Not a single couple got together, children separated from their parents, partners from each other,  it was absolute pandemonium as people started to trade places in the plane to be close to their friends/partners/young children….
Alistair got wedged next to a big fat Smelly Russian and a very drunk Scotman. Scotman was so pissed he kept complaining to the air attendants about the seats and kept just drinking. Alistair could sit on his seat only by lining 45 degrees away from Fat Russian… the smell did not help….
I was luckier, seated at the other end of the plane next to a Brazilian guy who was  tiny so I had a bit of space.
Things got better for Alistair as Pissed Scotman managed to get Fat Russian Man to swap his seat with a girl, whom, either was with Pissed Scotman or was picked up on the way….
Well, I am complaining but the alternative could have been ending up at the bottom at the sea like another Air France flight (from Rio) did some time ago. In any case all this chaos and dodgy planes did not fill me with much confidence with the company and from now on I will stick to TAM or BA….
Talking about planes falling into the sea, one of our Brazilian friend was due to take that doomed flight, except that her boss phoned her the day before leaving and made her delay her departure (due to last minute work issue)  At the time she was rather pissed off with her boss… until the plane fell.
It must have been the luckiest phone call of her life. Must be fate!
Now we are back at home… trying to organise the shipping of our container. I feel this is going to be another adventure…
My visa seems to not allow me to work. I will investigate this further as it is annoying. I like to keep my options open.
After a dreadful  return flight in a plane that seems full of monkeys rather than people we arrived at Rio where it was barely 20 degrees. We could not believe it. And since last week end the weather has been wet and cold. It should be 40 by now, but it is barely 23 or 25!  Positively freezing for the locals! So if the weather has been unusually warm in the northern hemisphere, here it has been unusually cold and / or wet.
We have friends coming soon for Carnaval.  They are going to be so annoyed if the weather keeps awful!
I asked a Brazilian friend what would happen if it rains during Carnaval. “There would be a revolution” he said. So let’s see! J

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