Monday, January 04, 1999

Winter Break in Europe

Boston, MA, USA
Since January is the independent activity period at school, I'm taking a trip to Europe to be actively independent. My itinerary is:
  • Paris, France
  • Bern, Switzerland
  • Milan, Italy
  • Genoa, Italy
  • Marseilles, France
  • D-Day Beaches, France
  • Oxford, England
The trip begins with a flight from Boston, MA to Gatwick International Airport, London, England. My original plans were to to hang out in London and Paris with a travel partner, who was on MIT crew with me. He bailed out of the trip on 01 Jan 99, two days before "Go Time." I wasn't about to hang out all by myself, so I threw together a quickly revised travel plan to see some other countries. Without a map.

The Virgin Atlantic flight is scheduled to depart at 2020. Boston is misty right now, and as I left the house, the brisk air was heavy with the scent of fireplaces and burning wood. I ran into my fraternity brother Ed Essey at the airport, he was just returning to Boston from Christmas break. We chatted until the shuttle bus came to my stop. I checked in and hung out in the gate area. The airport monitors have an oscillating image, which more or less reminded me of a space invaders game in text mode.

The more I watched it, the more it seemed like a hallucination and I started to wonder if there was something I had forgotten to bring. On the plane, it was pretty sweet. Personal LCD TVs for every seat. The meal was a Ricotta crepe with chardonnay followed by a rocky road cheesecake. I declined the rum and Irish cream. It was reasonably spacious on the plane. On arrival, the sunrise was in sharp contrast to the rainy, foggy, generally wet stuff below. It was 12 C, which is about 55 F and a welcome change from the chilly Boston weather.



 

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