Finally on the plane after my long stretchy 13 hour layover. Before all that, I have a story to tell.
My journey started in New York with the stress of being overweight off my shoulder. However for some reason my luggage was tagged till Abu Dhabi, meaning I had to somehow get them and recheck them. This has never happened as I always get my luggage at the final destination. Before boarding, I am told I need to collect my luggage in Rome (which was my next stop over before Abu Dhabi) and check them in again. Now I’m very confused but I let it rest since I have an 8hr flight ahead of me.
We get to Rome, and I ask the flight attendant where to get my luggage; “I am sorry you cannot do that here. Boarding for your next flight is already on going. You need to rush to your gate.” Came her response. The screens kept on showing Abu Dhabi but with different flight numbers and none of them reflected what I had. It is now about 20 minutes to end of boarding time. I struggle through my balancing tears and ask the Help Desk where to go. I make it to the gate which was at the other end of Leonardo da Vinci-Fiumicino Airport. I ask about my luggage before boarding and the guy affirms that I will get them in Abu Dhabi.
Finally at Abu Dhabi, I follow the instructions on where to collect my luggage. I was not in such a hurry because I had a 13hour layover, all the time in the world if you could ask me. I get to the check points, try scanning my passport, it gets rejected. So I get moved to another line and I have to explain that I need to get my luggage and do not need a visa because I’m on transit. The attendant then hands my passport to the policeman in charge and he directs me to the help desk on the top floor.
I explained my situation gave all the information and after a few hours of confirming and reconfirming I was assured that my luggage was safe and I will get it once I got to Nairobi. The stress was finally over and I could now explore all corners of the airport.
I was really excited while booking this flight because; It had a layover in Rome meaning I’d set foot in Italy…the airport is still in Italy so it counts as a country I have visited plus the ticket was fairly cheap which most of the time is a good deal, however after my experience I wouldn’t use the airline again or recommend it just because of all the hustle and tussle I had to go through and the uncertainty of many other things.
I could not get myself to fall asleep. Maybe I had the phobia of missing my flight yet I had a 13hr layover. Maybe if I had company I would. But coming to think of it I did not feel sleepy. I made good use of my time and made great use of the internet. I got to write and publish and article. Talked to everyone who was awakeJ. Special thanks to all those who kept me company.
I watched the airport being cleaned, watched other travelers rush to their flights till it was my turn to do the same. I got home to a steaming ugali.
I unpacked and packed my bags for my next adventure the following morning to Zanzibar Island.