October 23, 2011 Travel
Barcelona in October, Arrivederci!
The taxis were on time. Three little yellow and black SEATs awaited us with their trunks wide open, ready to swallow our bulging suitcases. Our chauffeur was in a good mood, but our effort to strike up a conversation with him, as is our habit, was futile. He was already deep in playful conversation with the other two drivers, judging from my modest understanding of the language, covering topics ranging from the world situation, via soccer to matrimonial issues. But as we were approaching the airport there was a definite shift, both in themes, behavior and mood. Now it was all about the soon upcoming coffee break and who would get there first. Laughing under his breath, with one hand on the microphone, the other gesticulating wildly and waving at his mates, only occasionally and absently touching the steering wheel, while moving in and out of lanes, our man was set on winning. Terrified, the ladies in the back seat and I looked at each other, and pictured ourselves getting a place in the huge, open air burial facility on Montjüic that we had just passed a couple of minutes ago.
Arriving at the airport we were so relieved to be alive, that when the driver charged us almost one third of the fare on top of the actual one, probably having heard about The Norwegian Airline’s lucrative policy…, we were ready to embrace him for not killing us, and willing to pay all that and more.
The flight Barcelona – Oslo was uneventful, thank goodness. I was standing in line for the youknowwhat, when the captain was announcing our descent over the loudspeaker. Among other things he also mentioned the temperature on the ground. It was + 1. +1! I was not ready for that, and promptly, without thinking, I turned to the purser storing away remnants of food and drink in the compartment next to me, and appealed: “Could you please, please, please, make the captain turn the plane around and take us back to Barcelona!” The friendly man took a good look at me and my sincere, but desperate expression, and said: “Sorry ma’am, but you see, my colleague and I are just making this and another short trip, before heading towards Tenerife where we are getting a whole day off!” He smiled.
He was still smiling, when a couple of hours later he welcomed us onboard the plane, heading for Trondheim. Obviously, this was the “short flight” he had been referring too. When he saw me, he grinned apologetically, and letting us off in Trondheim, both he and his female colleague, now laughing from ear to ear, probably delirious at the thought of the warm Tenerife sun, promised that the next time, at least if their day off was scheduled in Reykjavik, they would definitely consider rerouting the plane in a more southerly direction.