Friday November 13:
Jude and I got up at our normal time. Jude knew today was the day. We had breakfast, got dressed, wrapped up packing and did a few last minute errands.
We left our home right around 11 AM and were driven straight through to Boston. We got there just after 2. We were able to check in for our first flight to Paris, but for whatever reason, not the connection to Sofia. No matter, we had a 4.5 hour connection so weren’t worried about the extra step. We made it through security by 3 so got a midday meal and onto our gate about 20 minutes before boarding starting at 4.
Safely on the plane at 4:30 and as we were almost set to go everyone started hearing the news: Bombing in Paris. But we knew nothing more. And took off on time.
From where we sat it was a relatively uneventful flight. Except there was a few times that the plane made some odd, sudden course corrections. We would find out after landing that for part of the flight we had been diverted to Ireland, and then Brussels.
Saturday November 14:
But we landed in Paris. Shortly after 5 AM local time. Taxiing to the gangway fellow passengers got the full brunt of what had happened and shared. We were secretly very concerned about what we were now walking into: a city under attack.
Our gate checked stroller was not coming. We were told to move along after exiting the aircraft. Likely would see again in Sofia. At this early hour and given that we were amongst the first arrivals after the French president speech one could note that there was an increased security presence but we got through in about 10 minutes.
We met another family that is traveling to Jude’s village to meet their daughter. Jude and their adorable 2 year old spent the layover playing.
An hour before departure I was able to check in at the gate. We boarded about 15 minutes before we were scheduled to take off and were delayed for an additional hour because of the heightened security. But we did leave and arrived in Sofia only an hour late. Without a stroller in sight. We expected this so have filed a claim with the airline. They expect it to arrive Sunday afternoon. We had all the other luggage. Our driver had waited for us! And we had a smooth check in to the same apartment from June. Immediately after we walked around a bit and went to Happy Bar & Grill and then to the Billa for groceries before coming back and down for the count by 9.
But we are here. And booked to fly home via Frankfurt assuming the Lufthansa strike stays over for now.
Friday November 13: