I’m stealing this idea from one of my friends who has studied abroad previously and did an entire series of these “Things I learned” lists. For those of you who have been following along, I made it! I’m currently sitting in a hotel room of Casablanca, in the brief window of downtime we have. But the journey here was not without its mishaps. So, without further ado, 26 things I learned by traveling for 26 hours:
1. Falling asleep the night before you begin will not happen. I promise.
2. There is inevitably a scramble to finish packing and obsessively double check all your luggage minutes before you leave your house at 3 am.
3. Goodbyes are really hard. See my previous post.
4. Delta Airlines can and will call you at 3:30 am to tell you your 6 am flight has been cancelled.
5. Pittsburgh Airport at 4 am is an interesting and slightly disturbing place.
6. Staff members who are on the last hour of their shift can be really grumpy.
7. But other ones remind you that there are good and decent people in this world.
8. You will thank your lucky stars that the originally 9 hour layover in JFK has allowed you to get on a different flight, thus making all of your connecting flights.
9. Your wonderful friend will let you hang out at her hotel for the next 5 hours, while you wait for your 12:25 flight.
10. There is a Brugger’s Bagels in the Pittsburgh airport.
11. They have WiFi on planes now.
12. Having an hour and a half to navigate JFK airport to an international flight is stressful.
13. My high school French has sadly atrophied.
14. French people are gorgeous. I know, stereotypical, but it’s seriously true.
15. French male flight attendants are even more so.
16. The flight attendants of Air France will size you up, and greet you with either bonjour or hello based on their evaluation.
17. No one tells you this, but it is ridiculously flattering to be the recipient of a bonjour.
18. In flight meals are awesome.
19. Water can be served with a foil lid.
20. Airline seats are only a step above tour bus seats, with neither being comfortable enough to sleep in.
21. Paris Charles de Gaulle airport is easier to navigate than JFK, even if you don’t speak French (well).
22. Air France is very big on serving coffee on planes. I am okay with this.
23. The Casablanca airport is beautiful, but confusing.
24. Getting your passport stamped is an awesome feeling.
25. T-Mobile lies about their international plan. They do NOT cover Morocco.
26. Charades is a fun and effective way to communicate and find the coffee shop you’re meeting your group at.
As I said earlier, it all managed to work out, and I am now safe and sound in my hotel. I plan on going more in-depth with some of my statements in future posts. But for now, I’m going to say good night. It was a long couple of days, and I’ve got several amazing things to do on the itinerary for tomorrow!