“Hey, you’re flying backwards, aren’t you?” Said our friends Mike and Marty Dows when I told them my route was NY to Istanbul to Bordeaux. Indeed, they were geographically right, but Turkish Airlines flies the route daily and it’s quite popular. And, they had the best fare around. I actually need to spend a few words praising this airline, which I’ve read was voted the #1 European line last year. It’s well-deserved.
1. Efficient check -in
2. Beautifully served meals with real silverware ( not plastic ) and real food (not processed and in plastic ). AND a printed menu.
3. Best entertainment selection I’ve seen in a long time.
4. A goody bag. Socks, mask, lip gloss, ear plugs, toothbrush, toothpaste. Honestly, I haven’t gotten one of these in at least 20 years. All in economy, too!
5. On time departure and arrival, with quick baggage delivery.
I will be checking out Turkish Airlines for future jaunts, I can assure you.
Arriving in Istanbul at my body’s equivalent of about 11 pm wasn’t too bad, but then the five hour layover got to be a bit long. However, the airport boasts the largest duty-free shop I’ve ever seen, and I was immediately taken back to my 5th grade geography class when we learned that “Constantinople” was the crossroads of commerce. It still is.
After the third time of browsing the shops and tasting all the sample varieties of Turkish delight, I bought some, found an empty lounge and stretched out for a lie-down.
My body clock was now at about 4 am so I decided a shot of caffeine was in order. Turkey’s known for coffee, right? So I ordered myself a cappuccino and an interesting looking pastry. I even got a little free box of candies
I kept noticing everyone else seemed to be eating these round things, flatter and rounder than a bagel. Come to find out, the real snack or breakfast of choice seems to be one of these, called a “simit” and tea. I was stuck in italian-mind with the milky drink and a sweet roll for breakfast.
My flight to Bordeaux boarded, and before I knew it we were over the mountains, probably the Dolomites and Alps. Magnificent, whatever they were!
And soon we were crossing the Gironde in Bordeaux.
Passport control, toilet, luggage, and finally. . . .Telma! Wow, was I ever happy to see her!
A new adventure is underway! At the moment I’m exhausted but exhilarated. Let the good times roll!