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Eurotrip, 2002

In my second solo trip to Europe, I decided that I'd go to Germany, Czech Republic, and Austria. Solo traveling can be difficult and lonely, even when you're willing to put yourself outside your comfort zone and fully embrace the experience.

  • Berlin, Germany
  • Prague, Czech Republic
  • Vienna, Austria
  • Salzburg, Austria
  • Munich, Germany
  • and a quick trip into London on a layover.

Fortunately, I met a lot of interesting people on my trip...

Boston, USA
The trip started at 4pm sharp, but I barely got to the next block when a UPS truck drove by. This is relevant because I figured that my printer would be on board (I’d been expecting it earlier), and rather than worry about meeting up with the delivery guy back at my apartment, I walked up and ordered my printer from him, like it was a hi-tech ice cream cone. I dropped it back at my apartment, and began my trip again, at 4:07pm. I did the whole T to the airport thing, checked in, blew past security, nothing set off the alarms. At 5:30pm, I was outside my gate, for a flight that departs at 6:40pm. I stopped into the commercial section of the terminal, but no moneychangers anywhere. I guess I’ll do it in London, since I’ve got a 4-plus hour layover.

At 5:55pm, the official boarding time, an announcement over the PA informs us that favorable winds aloft would cause us to break London’s “No landing before 6am” rule. The new departure time is now 7:30, a half-hour more to stay awake. Around 18:40, my seating group was called and I got to experience the full gear and shoe search. It may have been a bit inconvenient, but I boarded the plane a few minutes ahead of the people who were formerly next to me in line. Fortunately, I didn’t have to empty my jacket pockets (I’ve got at least 7 filled with stuff). My “row mates” are your standard issue 40+ lesbian life partners. But they were small and didn’t take my armrest. Now for dinner: my pre-meal drink was a domestic white, which went well two bags of peanuts. The meal was steak, salad, and a delicious chocolate brownie. The dinner drink was Gin and Tonic; I made the first one way too strong but my fourth was pretty good (total 100ml). At the end of my row, a man and a woman are having an animated conversation.

While normally I’d be annoyed that someone would be talking to me when all I want to do is sleep (it’s 21:12 Boston local time), I feel that I’m missing out on an entertaining time. The lesbians haven’t said a word to me yet. But eventually, we commiserated about the small annoyance of the loud and liquored up pair. The lesbians are a bit of all right. The three of us watched the pair rub Lubriderm into each other’s leg tattoos, give each other hand massages, and overheard “It only takes 2 gin and tonics to get me drunk.” But I could count more than that on her tray. I’m pretty sure that the pair just met on the flight, because she’s talking about where in San Francisco she’s from. I can’t hear anything he’s saying, so that part of the conversation is lost.

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