Friday June 15, 2012
Today, we arrive in Istanbul, where an OAT (Overseas Adventure Travel) representative will meet us at the airport. We transfer to our hotel downtown, and have a brief orientation late in the afternoon. This evening, we can discover any of the Turkish restaurants in the area as we enjoy dinner on our own.
Well, not quite like that. James left on Thursday at 11 am. He was brought to Richmond Airport by Sarah. He had plenty (!) of time in Washington Dulles Airport since he could not get on the earlier flight to Frankfurt. Both flights that day were overbooked. He had a good flight but missed his connection by a minute (no kidding). Doors had just been closed.
I was on the other end of this. I had plenty of time too since I had to allow for unforeseen things on the autobahn but everything had gone very smooth including the return of the rented car. I kept an eye on James' flight and new it was going to be close. I talked to the gate agents who were very compassionate. But they were not very hopeful. When James texted that he had landed (hurray for iPhones) .. that he was in the bus .. they were not encouraging. I boarded the plane almost last. When I entered I told the First Officer to take his time and that my husband was running across the airport and that he had long legs. Then he came to my seat telling me that they had to close the door, that my husband had not made it and that he would bring me a bottle of champagne to enjoy with my husband when we had reached the hotel in Istanbul.
Well, it was a good flight, I was brought the bottle of champagne just before landing, and I waited in Istanbul Airport for James until he finally arrived too with Turkey Airline. He could have been one hour earlier but their luggage did not come for a long time. Again, hurray for iPhones because we could text (even so my roaming is turned off) like "still no luggage" and "can you already change money to Turkish lire while you are waiting?" Very helpful!
When James finally arrived, we took a taxi and after a somewhat scary drive we finally were in our hotel. Our guide for the whole tour greeted us and all was fine.
This is the view from our window. The hustle and bustle was exciting.
So we ventured out. We walked a little and then stopped in a place like a pub, had an order of calamari and a couple of beer.
Of course the beer was local. And we both put our fingers into the complimentary bowl with nuts.
The way back.
And then we had a good night.