It was with some trepidation last night that I boarded the KLM flight to Amsterdam. How the hell was I going to survive 12 hours in the air? I needn't have worried. The cabin crew made sure that even economy class wanted for nothing. And can I say it? Oh my, smoked almonds.
Even better, I didn't have any snorers and I did sleep a little.
Schipol is BIG. Then again, I am a South African who's on her first trip to the northern hemisphere. Everyone was very friendly and I found the rest of my group (they'd flown up separately from Jozi) and what did we do? We ended up in an Irish pub in Amsterdam. Go figure.
And that first 500ml Crossbow cider went down mighty fine.
One highlight of the airport (not that airports by their very nature have highlights) was that I saw the Schipol Rijksmuseum that had an exhibit of Dutch girls. Now I understand why the Dutch were considered the masters of portraiture and landscapes during the 17th century. And while I've seen a few masterpieces in South African art galleries, this small taster of what can be found in Amsterdam proper makes me fiend for the day I can haul the DH to Europe with me on one of these trips.
Our flight to Dublin, courtesy of Aer Lingus, was uneventful. I was a bit concerned at the strong winds we had upon landing, but kudos to the pilot. He did a bloody good job. And this is the Capetonian who's blase about the southeaster perking up about wind.
I watched some of the other planes land and they looked a bit like drunk geese caught in strong cross-winds.
It looks like what's happening in Cape Town's CBD is happening in Dublin too. A LOT of revitalisation of the CBD with more public-friendly amenities. Public transport here rocks. South Africans who visit will probably have their eyes pop out of their skulls when they see how much everything costs--food and drink is quite expensive in the big hotels and restaurants.
But it's all worth it. I'm looking forward to tomorrow when we do our first tour of the city. Tonight we're just chilling out, going out for dinner in an hour or so and I'm heartily glad I've had my bath. I have cosy room in Jurys Inn, and it even has a slightly psychedelic carpet in the hallway outside my room.
Even better, I have wifi. I'm so not watching telly tonight when we get back. I may well edit. Yes, yes, I know I'm supposed to be on holiday but I can't help myself.