Tuesday, April 27, 2010
Stranded in the French Riviera...
I know, I know, I'm not complaining ...this is just the "rest of the story". On the day we were to return to London, a slip of paper appeared under the door, "Sleep in, eat breakfast, team meeting at 10:30 to discuss options." It is important to know that the AWC group I was traveling with were "travel savvy...Silver, Gold, Platinum, Diamond even Black priority card holders, so by the time we gathered everyone had the most current VOLCANO/ Airport closing information. Our travel agent, David (God bless him!) and his agency were on top of things and quickly booked us on the first available Eurostar out of Paris. Rick got on the phone and booked Christy a direct flight out of Rome to Boston ($1000 one way, $600 round trip, thanks Expedia!) SO we relax, thinking that we have a few more days to explore our little coastal town and soak up the sunshine and then .... the ASH starts moving south...Paris closes, Frankfurt closes, rumors that Rome will close! So I bid a tearful farewell to Christy - give her my phone (really good decision!) and the rest of us take a bus to the airport only to find out that our fights are cancelled. OK, we will take a bus by ferry to the mainland of Italy and make our way to Rome. Ten minutes later, half of us were running through the airport to catch a flight to Rome, Christy was frantically trying to get from the beach to the hotel to the airport, and while David and the other half wait for a later flight, he arranges for a bus to drive us from the Rome airport, overnight to Cannes where we have hotel rooms for the rest of the weekend. I was so relieved to see Christy when she finally arrived in Rome but she/we (and I mean all her adopted Mom's by this point) had a tough decision to make - spend the night (Rick again, came through with a room at the airport hotel$$$) and hope that the airport did not close before her 10 AM flight took off for Boston OR travel with us to Paris with no Eurostar ticket in hopes of getting to London and who knows when, to Boston. Calm under pressure, we say good-bye again and she goes to the International Terminal and I get on a bus with 18 other ladies, 2 drivers and David (God bless him!) That is the picture of Mary and me, toasting with our own bottles of wine on the bus....she is red and I am white, of course!
Cannes was beautiful! The pictures don't capture the resort feeling of people strolling along the boardwalk, drinking afternoon wine on the beach, taking in the sun and glamor. I am so glad I had the chance to spend some time there.
Tuesday we were up at 4 AM, took a bus to Nice, a train to Paris, another bus, lunch in Paris (that's another story),the Eurostar to London and good old bus 10 home! ahhhh, my own bed! I told you I had a story to tell!