From the Moleskine:
Brief, confusing stopover in Frankfurt. The German reputation for efficiency seems grossly overstated. Nobody knew where to go, or what to do, and since the ticketing woman in Singapore had told me to go to the transfer counter in Frankfurt to get a boarding pass, that’s what I did (along with a bunch of other fellow travellers). After waiting for half an hour on the hard granite floor with my huge backpack, I asked one of the harried ground staff to confirm whether we were supposed to be in the queue. She shrieked that no, I should be boarding my flight. So I hurried through Frankfurt airport, went out of customs, dealt with an officious Asian-German woman who didn’t want to let me back in without a boarding pass (even though I was just doing what I’d been told), went back in through security, got frisked very thoroughly because I guess my bra underwires must have set off the beeper (I have no idea what else it would have been), and eventually arrived huffing and puffing at the gate. Thankfully the Paris flight was delayed by 20 minutes so we all made it.
We struck up a grim camaraderie, those of us who recognised one another from the fluorescent transit lounges and interminable queues. “Well, you either have to laugh or cry,” commented a pretty young Australian girl, wearing a beautiful brocade jacket and black leather boots. It turns out she’s sitting next to me on the Paris flight. A young man in a sharp pinstriped suit is on the other side of me; he immediately opened Le Monde wide and hogged all the arm room. He also smells strongly of cigarettes.
I saw plenty of other dishevelled travellers, but how is it some people manage to look graceful and groomed and I look like I just crawled out of bed? I’m wearing jeans and a t-shirt I bought in Changi because I was hot and uncomfortable in my other top. It was the cheapest one I could find, in Giordano of all places. But they don’t seem to go in for plain t-shirts over there, everything either had touristy stuff on it or big slogans that didn’t seem to mean much. Mine was the least annoying, though it’s still highly cheesy: Every exit is the entrance to somewhere else. Whoa. Deep.
But perhaps it’s relevant on a day when I’ve been shunted from exit to exit. Now we’re finally trundling down the runway. Hopefully the next exit I go through will be the entrance to somewhere I actually want to go.