The trip in...
[Posted to Random Bytes on March 24, 2003 11:52 AM| Links to this post ]
Got into town on Saturday after what turned out to be an overly long trip. Our original iterinary was to fly from Toronto to Sao Paulo and then on to Rio after a 90 minute layover. Of course, as the fates would have it, we blew this schedule before we left the tarmac in Toronto. A one hour delay that didn't get made up put us behind the eightball when we got to Sao Paulo. To make it worse, Air Canada rebooked us on a flight that had been sold out for two days.

There wasn't enough charm in the world to talk ourselves on that plane - even though we tried eight ways from Sunday. But I'm getting ahead of myself. I had the interesting fortune to be on the same flight as Rael - leader of the freedom-Canadian (or is it okay to say "French" in mixed company again - I haven't been keeping up with state-of-the-art in political correctness) cloning cult that tried to pull the wool over the eyes of the world media earlier this year. He and his much younger female companion were fully outfitted in their futuristic jumpsuits very much looking the part of cult-leader and acolyte.

I wonder if their journey down here is pleasure or business. Pleasure I hope, or CNN is going to feel mighty foolish in their skepticism.

After spending a good two hours trying to charm our way onto a flight we manged to secure two seats on a flight leaving from a different Airport in Sao Paulo. "Congooneeas" the flight agent said. "Congoknees" I replied...

We went back and forth with the pronounciation five of six times whereupon she simply wrote the name of the airport and directions to the shuttle bus on a piece of paper. I need to learn some Portugese - or hear better.

The trip through Sao Paulo took roughly an hour - the squalor was inescapable. Slums and shantytowns seemed to be the rule, with the exception of the odd new housing development dotting the hills here and there.

Arriving at the airport, we waited a few minutes for our flight, walked directly out onto the tarmac. I asked the agent whether or not they had any preference regarding which plane we should board.

"First one on the right" he scowled. Not much humor at Congoneeds apparently.

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