I am unbelievably grateful to William for the past two days of driving in order to get me to the airport! Thank you, thank you, thank you!
Icelandair: What a delightful airline. When boarding the plane I was handed a water bottle of water (from Icelandic Glaciers none the less) and upon arriving at my seat there was a pillow and WARM blanket waiting. I was shocked. The pillow even had an Icelandic lullaby on it, translated in English as well. The stewardesses were stunningly beautiful as well. Unfortunately the flight was delayed for an hour after we boarded due to a technical error. I sat in a window seat next to a couple going on their honeymoon.
I landed in Iceland and started running to my next gate. Unfortunately I had to go through customs, but I made it to my gate right at the time the flight was scheduled to board. The odd thing about this airport, is that the gates are in separate rooms from the walkways. The room where the gate was was locked and everyone was standing outside in the walkway. Eventually a man in uniform comes and unlocks the room so we can go into the gate. The other weird thing, was that they never announced that the flight was boarding, instead a bunch of people just stood up and pushed to the front when they saw a woman behind the desk. The next weird thing happened when I scanned my ticket to board, a crazy noise came out of the machine and the woman told me “this is not your seat.” I started to worry, but then she told me that I’d changed seats. Apparently, if a family wants to sit together, they will shuffle all the single passengers around (even though I had a printed boarding pass with that seat). I ended up having an empty seat next to me and an interesting person sitting in the aisle who I talked to for most of the flight. He is a French man who spent his last six months in the US. He gave me some tips for living in Paris. I was pretty surprised when he said he couldn’t hear my american accent!
When we landed, he helped me find the train station. I was really surprised the people movers are slanted, both uphill and downhill. I felt like I was going to fall over a few times, I probably shouldn’t have worn high heels. They even have a big open center to the airport, where it doesn’t have a roof and lots of people movers in glass tubes go through it to change levels. I can’t imagine what that is like when it rains. When we got to the train station (which was connected to the airport via a free shuttle) the man checked out all the trains that went to the center of Paris. Unfortunately the “safer” trains didn’t go where my hotel is located. He told me that as a young girl with luggage it probably wasn’t a good idea to ride that specific train (although Sunday morning at 7am would be the safest time of any). So I caved and found a taxi to the hotel.
My room is already ready! They handed me a packet of information when I arrived and it stressed me out. I’m supposed to call my host family and tell them I’m arriving tomorrow, but I hate talking on the phone and my two hours of sleep will not make my French understandable. Luckily I have about seven hours before I officially have to be somewhere so I plan to take a nap, that is after I figure out how the internet works. I’ve spent the past hour trying, and first I didn’t realized I needed a cable, then the cable was broken, and now I just can’t get the ready light to shine green. I really wish William was here to handle all my electronic needs. I just called the front desk, realized I had to turn off wifi, but it still didn’t work. Called a technician and then found out I was missing another cord. Finally I’m able to use the internet!
As I said before I do in fact have a host family. It looks like they live in walking distance from Notre Dame. It is a man with two children (female 14, male 17) but the male studies in Belgium (so does that mean he’ll be there? i’m not sure). I’m really nervous and not sure what to do (or even how to use the hotel phone).
My room is really tiny. It has a long walkway, a tiny bathroom, a tiny kitchen (with kitchen utensils!), and a sofa that turns into a bed (which I’ll be sharing with a girl I don’t know), plus a TV and desk. This room is about 1/3 the size of the smallest hotel rooms I’ve ever seen in America. I’ll be fine and it’s only for one night, but my friend from the air plane was right: everything is smaller in Paris.