Saturday, 7 July 2018

Me and Nicolai from Moldavia

Vueling has a habit of canceling flights with little or no notice, overbook aircrafts and compensate the passengers with free dinners, breakfasts and hotel nights. This time, I got to stay at Clayton hotel in Dublin. Photo credit: bus driver who says he drives the bus for fun; he invented the wifi. I checked online and he did not.
At the airport, I met with Nicolai, who was going on vacation from Dublin, with a transfer in Greece, and we became neighbours on the 7th floor.
The hotel had a library, with a book I intend to read some day: The Loner by Quintin Jardine. The hotel also had a strict policy regarding ice cream scoops: always a minimum of three. "I am on an one scoop diet", I told the cute Irish server, which actually made him smile.
From my room, I could see horses and a lot of green. (The national colour used to be blue while Ireland was in union with the UK.) Here, Nicolai and I were basically till midnight talking about castles, how extremely low salaries are in Moldova (Ireland offers ten times more) and we decided to go to the Malahide castle together the following day. It would only take 15 minutes by car, Google said.
But we lost each other. He was not at the dining hall for breakfast, didn't open when I knocked on his door and we only met again when boarding the plane. I though he was on British time, meaning that if we agree on 8 a.m., 7.59 is normal and 8.00 is late. He had come down at 8.20 - so I went by myself. 
We did decide we would stay at the same hotel in Barcelona though. Once we landed, I waited for him at the entrance to the airport, where the shuttle buses came, till the staff told me it was forbidden; I had to get inside. Then I waited for him at the luggage pick up point. He had neon green shorts and hence impossible to miss, but yet it happened.
I did great detective work and found out which hotel he would be staying at, and stepped on the only bus that went there to look. Nicolai wasn't on the bus. Instead, Gabriel from Italy invited me for a non-alcoholic drink and all I have left is this butterfly Nicolai gave me the previous night.
"Why the face?" Nicolai asked.
"I don't like jewelry."
"Come on, it's a nice gift for you to remember me, just like the postcard you gave me."
"Ok. Can we do it again?"
He gave me the butterfly again.
"Oh, thank you! A butterfly! It's pink, I love that! It's exactly what I wanted!"
"Ok, ok, you don't have to exaggerate", he smiled.

Bon voyage, Nicolai!

No comments:

Post a Comment