Juris is writing:
Today we wake up early, around 6.a.m. Our flight across the Atlantic leaves at 10:30. The plan is for all of us to go by cars to the airport, leave the luggage and most of the team there and for the drivers to go back to return the cars and catch an Uber to the airport. The car rental opens at 8.a.m., but they have said that someone is usually there already at half past seven. Theorethically everything should work out, although we don`t know the traffic situation in the mornings. As the car rental is a kilometre or so from the highway (this particular office picked not without a reason), it seems to minimise the risk and we go for it.
The place we are staying does not have decent kitchen, so we miss the last opportunity to taste Ilgonis superb omelette. Everyone who wants grabs something to eat from our food stock. Some last packaging and then we go. The bags seem to be slightly larger, than when we arrived.
We arrive at the airport, take all of the luggage and find some place to wait until the check-in gates open. Imants, Ilgonis and Agnese goes back to the car rental, to be there and leave the cars as soon as someone is there. Around 10 minutes before 8.a.m. a message arrives from Imants: “Cars are OK” and then some 15 minutes later from Ilgonis: “Entered taxi. Expected drive 20 minutes.” A moment later Agnese sends us the Uber link, so we can follow their progress. When they are midway, we go to the check-in gate and continue to wait for them while waiting in line to drop-off bags. When everyone is there, we drop-off bags and go through security check, which is reasonably fast. The plan has worked, we are on time for boarding the plane.
The plane is slightly more modern than previously, although not bigger. Due to Agnese’s effert to change the seats, we are almost at hands reach with each other, me and Ilgonis in the middle row with three seats, hoping that the plane is not 100% full and that noone would be willing to sit in the single seat between us. We are lucky! Soon we lift off.
Thank you Chile! You have been welcoming!
Now, the 14 hours of flight across the Atlantic. Everyone tries to spend the time between South America and Europe and between meals somehow. Activities are mixed- some of us mostly sleep, some take time to watch the movies, do some reading and chat.
During our journey in Chile, while not at the steering wheel, I have finished Isaac Asimov`s Robot series and started BBC popular science presenters Jim Al Khalili`s book Sunfall. Turns out it is not a pop-sci book, but rather sci-fi book, but the science is also accurate and covers wide range of topics. Moreover, it is a well written thriller and I spend most of the flight time reading. Somewhere over the Atlantic, we cross the date line and the story continues in July 10.