“You need to show an onward ticket, miss.” Don’t have one. My hands shake, voice nervous. Haven’t slept, stayed at the airport last night after first flight.
“What can I do to help the situation?” There’s enough time before boarding to book something for show, so it’s no big either way I guess.
“Let me check.” (Drifts away and back.) “No problem. Remember for next time, please.” The Italian man who later turns out to be slightly psychotic watches to make sure I get through okay.
Airport is confusing. Looks small but unfolds in a twisted maze. The staff at the various airport shops are not exactly friendly. To me, anyway. Morph into an anthropologist conducting ethnographic research, so interactions become nothing but information of interest.
Pass by two blondes, long-long legs, stick-straight hair, Russian-model-gorgeous, smoking their faces off in the nicotine room – shooting the shit, leaned inwards, salivating on whatever salacious gossip hangs in the air, suspended by the wafts of smoke. Good picture.
“Yeah, I didn’t expect to pick you guys up here. This one’s where all the cheap flights go though. Takes about an hour. Most people fly into Tegel. ” Deliciously beautiful Chiara, 20 something, almost perfect English, even sexier German, chats with her American friends who just flew in from who knows where. We’re packed in her small stick shift, blasting down the highway. Chiara skis. So do the others. So do I. We talk shop. Whistler, boarding vs. two planks, Colorado, slope dating, etc.
“Here’s your U-Bahn stop – and here’s my number – call me if you need anything.”
“You’re so sweet. Thank you so much.” The girl just drove a total stranger across hell’s half acre, 11 at night. Offered on her own volition – all I did was ask where the taxi service was at the airport. Human generosity, alive and kicking.
U-Bahn, S-Bahn. S-Bahn, U-Bahn. Rain. Directions A gave me are wrong. More strangers offer to carry my suitcase down stairs, up stairs. Can’t lift alone, maybe if I weren’t so damn tired. Ask more people to literally point me in the right direction. Wander. Eventually take more right turns then wrong, end up in close proximity, but still no dice. Everything looks dark, concrete is all the same. Starts to pour. I worry about my cameras getting soaked. No awnings near. First time I’ve even thought about crying and I do.
Almost instantly, taxi pulls up. Walk bleary eyed over, between sobs. Show my map to the Turkish driver. “No problem, miss!”
He throws my suitcase/backpack in trunk. We start to head back to the airport. Manage to realize this soon, explain using gestures (don’t speak German or Turkish) and map where I actually need to go.
Ring A when arrive. Tears dried, shake it off, you’re just tired. Doing fine. Kicking ass.
Have an hour intense convo once up in the flat. Haven’t slept in about two days, yet finding out what art events to attend tomorrow suddenly feels urgent.