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Minor indignities

Paris, France

7 hours in a dark cabin feeling the blood flow cease to your legs, eyes closed but unable to sleep, simply waiting: to arrive, to start, to cease simply imagining this trip. I remember a time when flying fascinated me, and I could sleep on a flight. No more.

Air France charged me $125 extra to send my bicycle. Could have been worse...

The TSA allows one quart-size clear plastic ziplock bag filled with containers each holding no more than 3 ounces of liquid, as long as this bag is not concealed. A tube of Tom’s toothpaste holds 6 ounces: who knew? They confiscate my toothpaste in Boston, and to get my sunblock through I go through the entire wait-in-line-for-10-minutes-remove-shoes-and-coats-expose-laptop-and-all-other-electronics-pass-through-metal-detector-answer-innocuous-questions routine twice.

Dinner menu:
1. Supreme de poulet au paprika
2. Haricots verts
3. Pommes de terre a la lyonnaise
4. Camembert
5. Gateau avoine-raisin
6. Vin rouge

I watch a French movie about a French president corrupted by power: I think it ends with him considering the murder of his own daughter to protect his agenda. My French is exceptionally bad. The movies are unedited for content: no American prurience regarding what your kids see on the screen of the stranger sitting next to them.

When Paris arrives, it is as lights in the darkness outside, surprisingly close. It looks just as Boston did when we left, and for the briefest moment it feels like coming home. It isn’t Paris, anyway, but suburb after suburb until we touch down.

At Charles de Gaulle I suddenly discover that I’m booked on a different flight for Tunis then I purchased over the internet, and that my 8 hour layover is now only an hour. I was watching my bike box and my toothpaste tube instead of my ticket, I guess.

permalink written by  roel krabbendam on December 19, 2006 from Paris, France
from the travel blog: Harmattan
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wow, big brother, you are an inspiration! May the Harmattan be at your back throughout your travels. Phase one complete. You're there and all supplies are accounted for! On to phase two. This blog is great. tot de volgende comment.



permalink written by  Nieke Greb on December 22, 2006

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7 Trips
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Here's a synopsis of my trips to date (click on the trip names to the right to get all the postings in order):

Harmattan: Planned as a bicycle trip through the Sahara Desert, from Tunis, Tunisia to Cotonou, Benin, things didn't work out quite as expected.

Himalayas: No trip at all, just...

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