Amsterdam Airport

trains, planes...

9am on Saturday 21-5. That’s kind of early. And it’s 8am UK time, which is the one my body clock is working on.

Up at 3.45am. 85mph all the way to Edinburgh Airport to be there for the 6.05 KLM flight.

I’ll get back to Amsterdam in a second, but why is Edinburgh Airport so cruddy?

A huge queue to check in – which I managed to skip thanks to a friendly Servisair person. 4 desks, all supposedly “bag drop” – but no check in desk, so we’re all in the same queue even ‘tho I’m checked in already… Mindless.

Actually mindSET. Treat the customer like a piece of c**p.

Then upstairs to security. Another huge queue, only because they have just 2 machines operating. Again, treat the customer like c**p. At 5am precisely they opened up 2 more machines. (Mental note – next time wait until after 5 before trying security.)

Schiphol is like an old friend I haven’t seen for a while. It has been 3 years. Time was I’d be passing through here every month. I know where the best places are for food, for coffee, for peace & quiet (not telling).

The transfer desk was fast and friendly. I like the people here, mostly. Not like Scotland, where I don’t like the people (mostly). Here they’re efficient and smile at the same time. At home they’re often useless, unhelpful and “smile” is a 4 letter word. Except for the Poles (and Slovaks and Latvians) who haven’t yet been to the “how to be miserable” training course. Give them time…

Sm**e. Sorry, 5 letters.

Yes, Schiphol is cool. A bit frenetic these days, but still. Memories come flooding back from lots of trips where this was the transfer airport. Especially all those flights to Thailand with China Airlines and KLM. Lots of hours spent here waiting for connections. The occasional lungbursting sprint from one end to another. Sbucca. The Japanese noodle bar. The KLM business class lounge.

Next up is JAT’s 11.50 to Belgrade. But maybe black coffee first? With some Van Morrison and David Gray from iTunes. Seems like a plan.

© iain taylor 2011


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