So here I am at last …
well, Im here though that whole process did not go as smoothly as planned. Caught the train to Ashleen´s, no problem, coach to london at stupid oclock in the morning, no problem. Tube to heathrow, piece of cake! Attempt to check in at heathrow and it all starts to go wrong. Firstly as I arrive i notice that 100% (I have just had to hunt for the % symbol on this brazilian keyboard) of flights to chicago and 99% of flights to new york have been cancelled due to snow and ice. great. on reaching the check in desk they ask me to sit and wait to see whether my flight will also be cancelled. ten minutes later im lucky and happily assuming everything is now fine. so i fly to JFK Airport but stupid me did not put two and two together and realise that if they are canncelling the majority of flights IN to an airport then chances are they are cancelling the majority of flights OUT aswell. And so it was when i tried to check my luggage back in, after battling my way through the fort knox that is US Customs, that i discovered my flight to rio was cancelled. American Airlines said no problem we can get you to rio you will just have to go via buenos aires but i would miss all my further connections but as they weren´t with AA they didnt really care. So i flew to argentina. At this point i had had enough. it had been a bit of a rough trip and i had been traveling, at this point, for well over 24 hours. i saw a flight leaving for sao paulo (the place i was ment to fly to from rio) and through myself on the mercy of TAM Airlines helpdesk (metaphorically threw myself that is not the literal physical action). they were like knights in shining armour (again metaphorically, it is WAY to hot for armour out here), they not only cancelled my flight to rio and rescued my luggage from its clutches but flew me to Sao Paulo and then on to Manaus to arrive at exactly the same time i was origionally meant to.
When i first wrote that I would quite happily have continued to sing the praises of TAM but right now I am in the hotel in Iguassu with only my hand luggage and the clothes i have been travelling all night in because i changed planes at sao paulo and although my bag got off the plain from manaus, it apparently did not get on the plane to iguassu with me. as i type this they are flying it to me and having it dilivered to my hotel as soon as it arrives. as this current hotel has the most amazing swimming pool and and i have little else to do this afternoon, this is a thourgherly irritating fact.
enough ranting about airlines, for now anyway. no doubt i will have more to say after flying down to rio on wednesday but after that its a good long time before i fly anywhere again. I hope that essay above doesn´t put you off reading. i have been having an amazing time and i hope the next bit will show that. i apologuise but i wont beable to right this straight without it sounding like a list so here it is instaid as a story.
She felt nothig but relief as she saw her name on a card being held by an enthusiastic cabby. one less thing to think about. So tierd. All the time to the hotel he kept chattering and asking questions but all she wanted to do was get there and sleep. After what seemed like hours they entered the driveway of the tropical manaus hotel. It was the kind of place that would have seemed overly grandeos on an english scale but here, on the bank of the Negro River, its 4000 rooms seemed perfectly framed by its gleaming marble, romanesque columns and indoor palms. Awaiting her at the checkout was a letter containing the arrangements for the next morning. a car would collect her from the lobby at 9am and transfer her to the Eco Park Lodge. All that regestered of this at this point was the servere lack of a lie in. Finally she was following the porter along the endless corridoors and round countless corners to room 3503. Once the porter had left her in peace she forced herself through the shower before falling into a fitful sleep…
i would keep writing but this is already way way longer than i intended it to be. In my next email, which may be tomorrow if it rains again (which it is doing alot i may add), i will start on the intresting stuff such as my rainforrest adventures 🙂