Long layover in Paris
Trip Start Apr 02, 2014
33Trip End May 07, 2014
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I’ve now started on a five-week trip that will take me to Mauritius and Reunion in the Indian Ocean, then to Rwanda, where Daniel Harper will join me. From there we will travel to Burundi, then to the DRC, Togo and Cote d’Ivoire. At that point Daniel will have to head home and I will continue on to Ghana to participate in a Ministerial Conference for our ministers in Ghana. Since I was going to be in Cote d’Ivoire just prior to the conference, it made financial sense for me to be one of the presenters.
Marjolaine drove me to the airport yesterday at 10:30. The Dallas traffic cooperated, so it only took us 40 minutes to arrive at DFW. I was pleased to find I was upgraded to business class for the 1000 mile flight to Detroit. I was less pleased when the flight attendant informed me that the fold out tray was missing from my seat. I opened the arm rest to verify and indeed found a black hole where the tray would normally be. When the light lunch was served, I had to balance the tray on my legs, taking care not to spill the beverage. During the flight I caught up on some reading, particularly Biblical Archeology Review, which I like to save to read on my tablet while traveling.
I find it sadly fascinating to fly over Detroit, a French word meaning strait, and the city is in a visibly in a rather dire variety at the moment. There are large patches of city that are vacant, places where there used to be homes, but where there are now just streets and vacant lots. There are also nice looking areas with big new homes. But there is a clear feeling of decline and decay as one flies over. I had about an hour between flights, enough times with some to spare to change terminals. The Airbus heading to Paris was full, as the flights always seem to be now, there were no empty seats. Around me was a American high school choir on a trip to perform at the Vatican. The group leader explained that they had offered to sing some songs in Italian but were told that was heard all the time in the Vatican so the students will sing in Latin, and a number of Negro spirituals, which are very popular for choral performances in Europe.
The flight was uneventful, I was able to sleep about three hours, and we landed in the early morning light. I picked up my boarding pass for my 12-hour flight to Mauritius this afternoon, which will have me arriving tomorrow morning. I cleared security and made my way to the lounge where I can rest and work.
Now I have six more hours to wait until that flight.