So, how did everything go in the getting together stakes? Well, my own trip was pretty straight forward. After a 5 hour layover in Philly, we got started about 15 minutes late due to a connecting flight issue, but that made us an hour late getting through the queue for take off. So we got to Rome and hour later than scheduled. No matter, I thought, I'll have less time to wait in baggage claim for everyone.
The flight itself was uneventful, and joyously, the plane was an Airbus A330, so each seat had a TV screen behind it and we could pick our own programming. I watched Hitch and Robots and a History Channel special on ice cream. And with my noise reducing headphones, I could actually understand the dialog!
So I arrived at 9:30am and the main group was to arrive at 10:20am. So not long to wait, right? Well... Firstly, the folks at Alitalia didn't know what flight 1189 was. They assured me that the Northwest flight would be hovering around claim 8 when they arrived. So I waited & waited and no go. Then finally Northwest flight 66 out of Detroit showed up on the monitors as arriving at 2:02pm. Was that them? Well, I thought, I'll wait for Tammy to come. Except, which flight was hers? FOr every US flight coming in, I scoured their respective baggage claims for Tammy, and never saw her. As it neared 2pm (I was very hungry by then and extremely tired) I finally saw Tammy. She was shocked to see me, figuring that we'd all headed on to the hotel. But the main group wasn't there... Still, within half an hour, they showed up.
Due to circumstances which I'll let judiang go into herself, I was surprised and delighted to see Judi there. I gave her a big hug and we all stood around waiting for bags to come through the chute. And they all came. Except Judi's!! Bugger!
So, Judi goes to wait in line at the Alitalia help desk, only to eventually be told to go to the airport help desk. I was already waiting in line there and we stood there for another half hour waiting to get through - only to have the lady there say it was something Alitalia has to sort out. Another 15-20 minute wait at Alitalia and the lady there (different from the person Judi first talked to) got Judi's details, et al. Hopefully she'll have her luggage tomorrow! (Stupid Northwest!)
After we got done with that jive, we, along with Gary, Marcia and Tammy, took an airport shuttle to the hotel. The fellow driving was very nice and informative. And did a U-turn in front of the hotel to drop us off. The hotel is very nice. Skinny tub/shower unit, but very nicely remodeled place. And there's a lift! (Only holds 3 people, but it's glass-fronted.)
After everyone had time to decompress in their rooms, we gathered downstairs and then headed off to see the Pantheon. Then, while at Piazza del Navona, we ate at some of the
It was on our way back from the Spanish Steps that Judi and I attempted to find the EasyInternet Cafe, but I took a wrong turning near the end of the journey and we decided to head back to the hotel instead of risk the place being closed (it was nearly 11pm). I got the bright idea about the Hotel's internet access once we returned, and here I am now, typing this up.
Judi's turn next!