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Make a flight for me

On Christmas Eve, I stopped by the travel agency at Piccadilly Circus in London to make the reservation for my flight. "To where, sir?" "For Palermo of Italy" "When?" "dd/mm..." A young woman typed it on PC. Then she said "_ pounds. This is the cheapest one." It's still expensive for my budget. As seeing I hesitate, she continued. "If there is vacancy on the charter flight by travel company, you can get slightly cheaper ticket than this. But please remind, there is some restrictions on departure date and the airport gonna be Luton." "Excuse me, where is the Luton?" "Well, it's suburb of London."

The price was shown. As she said it's slightly cheaper than scheduled fright. But it's still expensive for me. What should I do? I was thinking and I looked at her. She looked so restless and suppress her laughter. Finally, she bursted up the laugh looking the direction of window. I looked at the window. A young guy in Santa Claus costume was sticking on the glass. He seemed to be her boy friend. He tried to make her laugh with funny pausing. She could not concentrate on her work any more. She sent the sign to him pointing the watch as if she wanted to say "Wait a few minutes. I'm almost finishing the work" Well, She was right. Christmas holiday was just around the corner. Under the situation, the communication between "me" and her was broken down quite easily.
After all, I decided going with the charter flight from Luton. Fortunately, there was vacancy. I requested the departure date. And she booked it on a day of the week. This is a beginning of the tragedy. As a result, the departure date in my mind and the date actually she booked was different. And of course, I didn't noticed it.

On the day which I believed departure date, I checked out the hotel in London and headed for the Luton airport. Luton town was much farther than I'd expected. I had to have more than half an hour train ride, and then had to take a bus from the railway station.
After going through the typical English brick houses, I saw the flat field which were surrounded by the wire entanglements. The bus got into the area from the gate. "Wow!This is something like military base" The bus went around for a while and stopped in front of the tasteless building which looked like a gymnasium. It must be the departure lobby.

To get a boarding pass, I looked for the counter of the tour company. However nobody was there. Even counter wasn't there. I thought something was wrong and asked airport staff. "Excuse me Sir. I think no flight for Sicily today. The flight you meant is on Friday." He said. "Wait a minute, you said Friday...but today is still Wednesday." As saying like that, I looked down the schedule sheet. It said "FRI, dd/mm/yy" Gash it's all my mistake. I think ensuring the date and time must be the fundamental as a cultural animal.

Nevertheless coming to Luton, I got a two day extra for the departure. I didn't know where I should claim for. Then I called to the travel agency. I told my name. The woman was on the line shortly.
"Yes, may I help you?" "Ah, yeah, I'm calling from Luton..." "Yeah?" "I made request on today's flight. And I believed it's today without no doubt. But what a hell is this. Nobody's at the check-in counter." (It's astonishing this stupid guy making claim in such a strong tone nevertheless all his mistake.) Then she said "No, I told you available day in the week. And I booked it. You also agreed with that." We repeated a worthless conversation like "You said!""No, no, you said!" for a while.
Finally, I said to her "Please make a flight for me" (It's amazing. A man could say such a foolish thing when he could not step back any more.) "Listen! I've already checked out the hotel and come to the airport." "I have absolutely nothing can do for you. Bang! beeep----." The telephone was hung up. Yeah, the Santa Claus was an evil. (Now, he put all blame on Santa Claus.)

Dec. 2006

Today's piece
"Natural history museum" London, UK 1993

fumikatz osada photographie