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Monday, March 31, 2014

Kees, Margriet and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day

Patterned walkways of little pebbles at Topkapi Palace
 We set our alarm for a 7 AM airport pick up. But when we got to the hotel lobby, it was only 6 AM. I still can’t fully explain it, but apparently several countries changed to daylight saving time last Sunday. Except Turkey. Apparently the government decreed that the change in Turkey would happen on Monday, not on Sunday. So it was confusing. When we searched for ‘current time in Istanbul’ the internet said it was 7 while the clocks said it was 6 AM. All we could do was wait for the shuttle and hope that the airline knew what time it was.

The driver drove like a bat from hell. He actually did 110 KM in a 30 KM zone... By far the craziest drive we had this month.
It was going to to a Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day.

We’ve not often seen an airport that was slower than Istanbul’s Atatürk Airport. The passport line alone was over an hour of standing and shuffling.

The 'cook' flight attendant
The flight was delayed for an hour. They said it had something to do with loading luggage. Not ours, as it turned out.
It was to be a Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day.

It got worse when a Dutch guy across the isle from us boarded and started bossing people around, shouting and pushing. He swore and became quite violent. We expected the flight attendants to call in the police but that never happened. All we could do was hope he calmed down, once we were in flight.

But a second guy drank enough to turn violent, very loud and verbal. This time the swearing and yelling was in Turkish. We have never quite experienced anything like it. At one point, during landing, he took his seat belt off and nearly attacked the flight attendants. Still no police was called. 

When we finally made it into Schiphol Airport, shaken and tired, we discovered that our luggage had not accompanied us to the Netherlands. Even after a 2 hour wait - no backpacks. It was a Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day.

We filled in paperwork and left. At least I had the presence of mind to ask for a toiletry kit, which includes a clean t-shirt and socks. But all we can do is hope our clothes and other things show up tomorrow. A beer and croquettes helped. 
And, as Alexander knows, some days are just like that. Even in Istanbul.*

* referenced to Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day by Judith Viorst. 
A delicacy you can buy on the street.


  1. A very eventful day indeed!! Your late luggage story was a theme at the beginning and now at the end of your trip. What a harrowing flight with crazies on board and flight attendants probably too scared to intervene. They needed to put some sort of "sedative in their drinks. Another escapade to add to your every increasing world adventures!! I am just glad you are safe and sound and hope your luggage comes REAL SOON!

  2. Oh, my! But now it gets better and you will appreciate that very much!