I’ve downed much water and a fair amount of wine, both of which they hand out like candy on international Delta flights now. The wine will soon be paired with Benadryl in hopes of tricking my body into some sort of slumber as we jump 8 hours ahead. Sleeping pills helped me with my trip over to Tokyo; however, I also don’t really remember that flight that was entirely over the Pacific Ocean and I’m not sure sure that’s a good idea.
For amusement? I just got out of my seat to loiter happily in a standing positing at the line to a bathroom. Only at 35,000 feet does one say, “Oh, please, go ahead, I’ll wait” at a bathroom door, just happy to be standing. The food was airplane-quality (ick), which is why it’s good Kim and I purchased some snacky-snacks. BTW, I overall highly recommend international travel with Delta, though I’m usually extremely annoyed with the airline in the states due to some long and arduous mishaps in Atlanta.
Before this exciting turn of events, I watched Dead Poets Society. Again. Totally came to tears. Again. But this time at 35,000 feet.
Let’s see…what else? The Memphis to Minneapolis trip was easy shmeasy. Read the whole way. Then an hour in Minneapolis, which has a very suave Delta terminal. REALLY nice. It was easy to remember the gate in in the international terminal because it was “G6”. Like a….. (you’re welcome for the ear bug).
We each grabbed some mediocre food as we boarded a HUGE jet. Boarding time scheduled to be approximately an hour before we departed - THAT big. Our bags are checked through to Istanbul and our boarding passes are verified all the way from Memphis. The guy at the counter in Memphis had to go somewhere (for a while) where he makes sure all passports are real. ??? I imagine some huge special room behind some moving wall at the Memphis Delta terminal; however, it’s probably a tiny room with some old computer and DOS text next to an old vending machine on shag carpet surrounded by the acrid scent of 50-year-old cigarettes mixed with mildew.
Right now, the cabin is completely dark, aside from the subtle glow of the no-smoking signs and people watching movies on the back of seats. I have been on international flights where the stewards/-esses pulled all shades and night was “faked” so that people didn’t lose their minds. It’s nice this is real darkness.
In 4 hours and 22 minutes, we will arrive in Amsterdam, which is in the Netherlands…which is in a way Holland but not really. Long story there. And the people are Dutch and speak a version of Dutch. I was told to be sure to get a cookie there simply because they are called kookies. I’m not sure how valid that is, but I’ll use it in order to eat this baked good. :) We have a FIVE HOUR layover (ugh). Almost enough to leave the airport, but not quite considering that we would need to go through customs twice (in and out).
That is all for now somewhere over the Atlantic. I’m very excited to be going to a place that has continuously been a city of some sort for almost TWO THOUSAND years. How old is the United States’ oldest city? Yeah.
And a couple more bits of advice people shared with me who had been to Istanbul previously:
Definitely go to a Turkish spa, drinkTurkish coffee, eat Turkish Delight (pistachio or hazelnut and not the rose crap), and visit a hookah bar. Also even if the food is just like that which you have had in a Greek restaurant, IT IS NOT GREEK. Do not call any Turkish-anything “Greek”.
IN AMSTERDAM: It’s 10:30pm Memphis, but 6:30 in the morning here. Almost everything is in English. By the area I’m sitting is a family speaking Spanish. People around are speaking English and then a lot of Not-English with some “yah”s….I’m assuming that would be Dutch. :) We have FIVE HOURS here and neither of us have slept yet. Might try to sleep here in the airport because I can stretch out. The flight to Istanbul is about 3 1/2 hours.