Saturday, November 03, 2007

Up, up and away!

Up at 3:30 to catch the flight from Nice to Amman by way of Vienna. Goodbye house! See you again one day.

Driving along the coast I passed Monaco, bright with lights as though the stars had fallen down to the shoreline of the dark sea, leaving just a few to sparkle in the heavens.

Nice airport was basically empty – few people fly at 7am in the morning. I managed to get 30kg of luggage accepted wihout paying excess baggage – the company should pay since its work but I don’t know them well enough yet to be confident they would pay. Much more important, I got my back-pack with camera gear and computer okayed as cabin baggage. Two hurdles passed.

Flying over the Alps, glazed ice ridges standing in high relief as the early morning sun spills over chocolate brown valleys.

Over the plains of Austria, autumn tinged forests caught by shafts of sunlight breaking through the clouds, green fields stretching away into the blue horizen as though painted by Breughel or Van Eyck.

Totally uneventful flight, landed in Vienna on time. In the airport, during the 5 hour wait for the next flight to Amman in Jordan, I discovered very good, free wireless connection. Surfing the web, chatting with some friends (hi guys!) and dowloading a couple of movies from Veoh kept me busy right up to the next flight.

Royal Jordanian to Amman! Got myself an emergency aisle seat and was able to stretch out in comfort even though the ticket was economy. The flight itself was almost totally full of tourists, mostly German speaking, off to see Petra and the Dead Sea it seems.

By the time we landed in Amman it was dark. I checked into the Queen Alia airport hotel (the one the company had suggested I check into), dumped my bags and took a taxi to see the city at night.

Found myself with a driver who had lived in California for several years, had returned to Jordan to marry and have a family, and who’s business was as driver/guide. So I saw most of the city. I’ll tell you all about it in my next post.

Now I’m in the airport again waiting for the flight to Baghdad! I feel like Sinbad !

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