Helen (heleninwales) wrote,
Helen
heleninwales

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We travel to Amsterdam

Tuesday 23 August 10:55 am

So far the journey has been uneventful.

I was up early in order to pack the last few items into the suitcases and stuff the ratties' cage with food. They can manage for a few days on their own as long as they have adequate supplies. The drive to the airport was fine and, as we'd left plenty of time in order to cpie with heavey traffic, there wasn't any. Even the parking was OK.

As I'd feared, the long stay carpark was full, but when I asked if there was another long stay car park further away, a helpful chap explained that he could do better than that and offered us a ticket that would enable us to stay in the short stay car park for long stay prices. After cruising around several levels, we finally found plenty of space up on the roof.

There was a slight hiccup when we discovered that we were in the wrong terminal (Terminal 3) and made our way to Terminal 1, only to find no sign of our flight. After delving through a couple of menus, the helpful computer informaton point informed us that our flight went from Terminal 2, which led to a long trek down the sorts of tunnels and moving walkways that, if 50s SF was to be believed, would be what cities everywhere would look like in the 21st century.

And so we came to discover the much quieter area that is Manchester Airport's Terminal 2. Refreshments were consumed and then we managed to check in our baggage (even though the economy queue hadn't officially opened), pass through security without actually being frisked and I'm typing this as we sit in a quiet lounge with lots of seats by windows that look out over the tarmac and we can amuse ourselves by watching planes and vans and baggage trucks trundling about.

Tuesday 10:00 pm

We are back in the Novatel Hotel now, stuffed with Chinese food and relaxing, watching a documentary on the Emperor Hirohito on BBC TV which, for some reason, we can get here in the hotel.

The flight was fine and so far we have:

  • discovered how to get from the hotel into the centre by tram

  • worked out how Graham will get from the centre to the university

  • found the train I will need to catch in order to meet pariyal on Thursday.



We had a brief wander around the area by the Central Station, admired the canals, saw a lifting bridge operating in order to let a large boat pass, found a chinese resaturant and had dinner. And, as we wlked back to the Central station to get the tram back to our hotel, we passed one of Amsterdam's famous coffee shops that sell substances other then coffee.

It seemed odd that there were no shops to speak of in that area, but on the tram on the way back, I spotted shops in the Dam area, also the tourist information centre. Tomorrow, while Graham goes to register for the conference, I will explore. I also need to buy a new handbag as the strap broke on mine on the way here.
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