Trouble in Italy, Greece, Turkey, and….Canada

DSC00034Yesterday, travel.  Ruth and I got up at 2 am and left from Istanbul, Turkey, at 5 am.  After a 2 hour layover in Frankfurt, Germany, we flew to Vancouver, BC, a 10 hour flight.  Then we went to Portland, Oregon.  The day was 40 hours long.

Today, jet lag.   And some advice.   If you’re booking international travel, avoid routing through Vancouver.   It took us almost 2 hours to go from deplaning to enplaning because of a dysfunctional system.  We had to fill out a Canadian customs declaration even though we were just passing through the terminal.  Instead of moving briskly from one gate to the next, we had to stand in a long line to be questioned and turn in this form.  Then we had to wait for and retrieve our bags even though they were checked through to Portland.   The operation was both time-consuming and arduous.  At one point I was waiting in a line at the oversized luggage return even though I had nothing oversized.  Then we had to wait in a triple line to go through security again, proceed through U.S. customs in a Canadian airport, and walk a couple of miles to our gate.   What saved us there was yet another problem.  The door to the walkway to the plane was locked and no one inside had the code to open it.

It’s not just us.  Ruth’s cousins had similar treatment when they arrived in Vancouver last September.  And it may not just be Vancouver.  Ruth and I had a sweat-inducing experience in Toronto a few years ago and almost missed a flight to Budapest, Hungary, because our bags were still at the arrival carousel one hour before departure.  We had to physically get them and check them through before proceeding.  Luckily, ours were still there. Others who had similar, incorrect instructions were not so lucky.

Over the next few days, I’ll tell you about 3 troubled countries–Italy, Greece, and Turkey–and the attractions we visited.



About roadsrus

Since the beginning, I've had to avoid writing about the downside of travel in order to sell more than 100 articles. Just because something negative happened doesn't mean your trip was ruined. But tell that to publishers who are into 5-star cruise and tropical beach fantasies. I want to tell what happened on my way to the beach, and it may not have been all that pleasant. My number one rule of the road's disaster is tomorrow's great story. My travel experiences have appeared in about twenty magazines and newspapers. I've been in all 50 states more than once and more than 50 countries. Ruth and I love to travel internationally--Japan, Canada, China, Argentina, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, etc. Within the next 2 years we will have visited all of the European countries. But our favorite destination is Australia. Ruth and I have been there 9 times. I've written a book about Australia's Outback, ALONE NEAR ALICE, which is available through both Amazon & Barnes & Noble. My first fictional work, MOVING FORWARD, GETTING NOWHERE, has recently been posted on Amazon. It's a contemporary, hopefully funny re-telling of The Odyssey. View all posts by roadsrus

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