Tuesday, August 05, 2014

The Things One Learns While Traveling

Portable battery - Anker, cardigan - Nougat, flats - Cobb Hill

I got home last night, or more properly, early this morning.  Rain and lightning on both ends of my journey made things... interesting...

First off, when I got to my departure airport, I found that it was packed, literally almost shoulder to shoulder.  No seats, no place to even LEAN on something, and absolutely no access to any electrical outlets.  I'd been using my cell phone all day for contact among the various people taking me to the airport and picking me up, and I listen to music on it while in flight.  Dead battery loomed large, and dreadful.

I can't recommend enough these Anker portable chargers. It's exactly the same size as my cell phone, and it completely recharged my phone, even though the charger was down to about half power.  They're not complicated to use, and they're not expensive. I can't believe that I didn't buy one the first day I had a cell phone; they're that important.

Finally on the plane,but had to sit on the ground for over an hour before takeoff.  Everybody had to stay strapped in, since we were on an active part of the air field, so there was no food nor beverage.  I realized that the snacks that had been forced upon me before I left were going to come in very handy. My family always insists that I have some crackers or granola bars in my handbag when I leave, and from now on, I'm going to listen to them!

And last but not least, the airplane was FREEZING.  Absolutely "quick frozen to preserve freshness" levels of cold.  People in tank tops, shorts and sandals were miserable.  And since the flight attendants were chained to their little jump seats, they couldn't hand out the few blankets that they had on board.  (domestic flight seems to equal few pillows and blankets).  I know I've preached endlessly about a cardigan and closed toe shoes, but I looked like a genius last night on that flight. A warm, comfortable genius. Your don't have to pack a fabulous, expensive cardigan - just anything that will keep you from freezing for hours will be worth the effort.

After we landed, we sat for ANOTHER hour, on the ground.  Still incredibly cold.  Flight attendants once again trapped in their seats...

I listed to Poulenc piano concertos. Check the  video starting at around the 8 minute mark - heart-meltingly pretty.  Very French. They saved my sanity, such as it is!

Normal Vivienne Files service resumes tomorrow a.m.  Thanks for all of your kind words, and for your patience when I take off on these unexpected adventures.




  1. Hello Janice and welcome back!!! I looove my anker charger - never set foot on a plane without it! Also always tuck in some protein/granola bars/nuts/dried fruit - air travel is always an adventure, you never know what you are going to get! Finally, even if it's 100 plus degrees at my destination, I always bring a wrap of some kind - but on my last trip we were keep on the airplane with no air conditioning for over an hour - so I am adding a folding fan to my "must have travel accessories"!!!

    1. Fan - absolutely!!! I should have included one - I actually was using one while I was loitering in the very crowded airport.

    2. I've been carrying a folding fan for the last several years. It's saved me many miserable, sweaty moments.

  2. Your trip sounds fraught with trouble...I always pack a pashmina for the chill and air conditioning vents.
    The charger sounds like a fabulous idea...
    I carry almonds in my handbag to stave off hunger and have Perrier in the car and on the boat at all times.I frequently carry it on my walks too.
    Welcome back and hope you can recharge as fast as your Anker gadget...a jet lag gizmo would be nice!

  3. Travel becomes more and more of a challenge lately...but I am so glad to see you return safe and sound. Get some rest...I hope all is well with your family!

  4. So glad that you are back, and I am too... Looking forward to your offerings.

  5. Great advice and glad you are home safe and sound. Take care and hope all is well with your family.

  6. So glad to read you are back. Excellent advice, thank you for sharing. All the best!

  7. Oh my, what a trip! I appreciate the tips, especially about the charger, which I was not familiar with.

  8. Welcome back. Glad you survived all of your adventures and hope the family member is improved.

  9. Welcome back, Janice. We've missed you! Hope that all is well with your family.

    I will look out for that charger as I like to have my tablet with me when travelling so I can pass the time by reading however the battery doesn't last as long as I'd like.

    We went out for lunch today with a friend who (when I asked how long the drive would be) joked that it depended on whether he could remember the way and maybe we should bring water in case we got lost. So we took a large bottle of water plus cereal bars with us! I do like to have a bottle of water with me when travelling though plus a fan (in summer) or wrap in cooler weather.

  10. We just got back from overseas for two weeks. I employed your method of utilizing a color scheme. I went with purple/pinks and blacks. I hand washed items for the first time so I was able to bring only a total of two pr shoes, three slacks, five blouses, a handful of underwear, a cardigan and a thin fleece and two scarves. Total heaven schlepping from FRA to Berlin to KRK. I could have used a recharger though! I am going to check it out now! Live and learn.