Welcome to France, we are closed.

I wrote this while travelling to France last week and haven’t had the chance to post it since now, I didn’t want to continue writing about Europe without putting this short blurb in. So although much delayed, here it is. Best read after this post.

I’ve been waiting in the Zurich airport for 10 hours, yet Paris still eludes me. My transfer flight to Paris was delayed due to the public strike in France today. The French are notorious for their strikes but you can’t feel the full impact of a French strike until you’ve been stuck in one. The Charles de Gaulle (CDG) airport has been temporarily shut down since air traffic controllers are participating in the strike. Nobody knows when the airport will open again although CDG has been opening for a few minutes at a time to allow a few flights to land; therefore, every scheduled flight must call the airport directly moments before takeoff to confirm a possible landing in Paris. Consequently, I’ve been placed on every consecutive flight going from Zurich to CDG, only to have it cancelled in the last minute when the airlines find out the airport would still be closed. Running on little sleep and a hungry stomach, I’ve been switching from gate to gate for the last 10 hours. The strike has managed to extend a 10 hr trip to 20+ hrs.

When my 3rd and last flight from Zurich to Paris was canceled, the disgruntled woman sitting beside me at the gate said, “Welcome to France.”

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3 responses to “Welcome to France, we are closed.

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