Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Our travel adventure going home...

it has been quite an adventure to come back to Portland.  We left Tuttlingen on Wednesday for our early morning flight back to the US on Thursday. Our good friend drove us to the hotel in Kloten which is right next to the Zurich airport.  All very uneventful.  We checked into the hotel - Hotel Allegra - and went to our super cute, yes, really I am not exaggerating, room.  It was a family room with four individual beds in them. - Check it out here  http://www.welcomegroup.ch/en/allegra/
Then we decided to go to the pool.  The hotel does not have their own pool, but you get a pass to the public indoor/outdoor pool which by my book is much better anyways.  We took our towels and swimsuits before walking the five minutes to the pool.  Everyone had a fun time.  Mia Rose kept sliding down the big slide, Alena played in the water, while the parents just hung out.

Ice "cream" before we headed back to the hotel.  At the hotel, all of us had a drink at the bar - yes, kids get to go to bars in Europe :).  The staff was amazing! The girls got Pommes Frites in the bar - usually not possible - they were shown the kitchen, and scored a scoop of mango - yes, "safe" - sorbet each.  The staff really went above and beyond!

It was the perfect compliment to our sandwiches my Mom had made for us in Tuttlingen :)

In the morning the shuttle left - of course - on time at 6:15; and took us to the airport.  We checked in, went to the gate and waited.  Argh, the plane was late getting in from Atlanta.  But then we saw it landing, taxi to the gate, and in no time we were on board settled into our seats.

Captain comes on the intercom to tell us flight time will be a little over ten hours, and five minutes later "we have a small mechanical problem".  You know what that means, right?!  The plane needed repair, we stayed on board and took off with an almost three hour delay.  Our connection time in Atlanta was 2-1/2 hours...long story short, we missed our connection to Portland.  Delta had rerouted us to Las Vegas and put us on standby for a flight from Las Vegas to Portland.  That was not an option for us! So we were put up for the night by Delta in Atlanta, and rebooked in the morning via Minneapolis/St. Paul to Portland.

So I told you about our beautiful hotel in Switzerland, right? Clean, everything organized, no chaos, shuttle working, on time, you sign up and get your seat...Let me tell you, I was in for culture shock.  The shuttle was not there, the phone line to the hotel was not working, and Ron got us a ride with another shuttle.  We checked into the hotel by presenting our voucher, and were assigned a room.  The beds looked clean but that was about it.  We were next to the laundry room with sheets strewn everywhere, and several trash bags - full - next to it.  The carpet was stained, and the furniture had several cigarette burns in them.  Quite a difference to the clean room at Hotel Allegra. We also had meal vouchers, luckily there was a restaurant in the hotel to get some dinner.  Ron ordered a burger for the girls to split.  We determined that the bread was not safe after talking to the waiter and ordered it without the bread.  The "hamburger" as stated on the menu was served and you know what it was?  A "cheeseburger" - that was a little different, right?  In any case, it all worked out and I had the best Coca-Cola of my life.  Crushed ice and all....

In the morning we found, that several people did not make the first shuttle and that there was no way that we could get on the next shuttle.  Eventually we made it to the airport, and then to Minneapolis

from where we went onto our flight to Portland.  Yay!!! 44 hours later we landed safely in Portland...now that was really a great adventure going back home.


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