Estimated reading time: 3 minutes
Sunday afternoon at 7:50pm I reach Barcelona airport, looking forward to starting my trip to open up the new Zyncro office in Sao Paulo. My first disappointment begins here: Iberia had decided to cancel the 21:45 Barcelona-Madrid flight leaving all of us travelling to the Americas stuck on land seeing as Montevideo, Lima and other destinations had also been affected.
20:10 After some time waiting at the Iberia customer service centre, a very friendly lady informed me that there was nothing more she could do for me as Spanair do not fly to T4 therefore making the connection impossible. My question was… “What about Vueling?”… “Just one moment, I’ll find out for you”. When she returned after having consulted the supervisor, they had managed to allocate me a seat on a Vueling flight at 21:45, the same time as Iberia had been. Perfect!
20:25 I get to the Vueling check in with a huge grin on my face. Next blunder: “We can’t check in your luggage all the way to Sao Paulo, you will need to collect it and check it back in at the same terminal”. “Why?”. The reply was: I’m not authorised… Well I shall make an official complaint to Vueling about this one, I cannot understand how Iberia and Vueling, having the same shareholders and being at the same terminal, cannot check in my luggage and deal with its transfers to reach my final destination. In any case, God moves in mysterious ways and leads us towards the right path in the most unexpected manner, read on…
20:45 At the gate. 20 minute delay is advertised. I think to myself: “I can still make it, the flight leaves at 00:40, arriving at 11:10, I still have time”.
21:45 We have still not embarked.
22:10 Embarking begins. Annoyance bubbling under the surface!!!!
22:45 We take off. I start thinking about how short of time I am. I have an idea!
23:50 Complicated landing in Madrid with a windy and electric thunderstorn. The pilot has to correct the course of the plane in order to the updraft.
23:55 I text Julia, my wife (cabin crew member): What happens if I turn up to embark at the gate with my suitcase? Fast reply back: if they have time they’ll take it down to the cargo otherwise, they will store it in the cabin for you.
00:00 The plane stops after a very long taxi… and… let it all out now!!! I’m f*****
00:10 The bus was quicker than I had expected. Waiting for my suitcase. I only have 30 minutes left.
00:25 I manage to get my case, clearly I have no time to check it in. I run out and see an Iberia customer service desk: “There are only 15 minutes before my flight leaves, would you mind letting them know that I am going to run over to get there in time?” “Yes, I will ring and let them know, but hurry as they are already embarking. There are only 15 minutes left before takeoff”
00:30 I see a sign, gate U, 23 minutes and on top of that, I have to take a train. And let us not forget about passport security control.:)
00:35 Passport control. What I was expecting to hear: “Does this case need checking in?” Answer: “no I am not carrying any liquids or anything that is not allowed on board and they will take it down to cargo as soon as I get to the gate”. They allow me to pass.
00:37 Sh**! My trousers are slipping down, I make use of the time on the escalator to put my belt back on again after having removed it for the security control.
00:40 Police control: “Where are you going?” “To Brazil”. Nice policeman. “Well hurry as there’s not much time”:)
00:40-00:45 The sprint of my life (running is not my thing) I get to the gate, I am last, but I make it to the plane!!!!
00:50 There is not enough time to take the case down to the cargo but an amicable cabin crew member stores it away for me in a cupboard. If I had checked in my suitcase, I would not have made it after going through all the security.
00:52 I reach my seat, a crew member sees how sweaty and disgruntled I am. He asks: “Did you run all the way here?”, I answer: “Yes, they cancelled my flight from Barcelona and put me on another one that has arrived one hour late”.
00:53 Super nice Iberia crew member brings me a glass of water!! 🙂 Wow, I needed that!
01:45 The plane takes off after almost 30 minutes of waiting in first position in the taxi queue. It is not raining too much but the electrical equipment is very powerful and there are tremendous gusts of wind.
Help from Pedro Trujillano via Twitter was great, as was the moral support from Dídac, Patricia, Agustin, Ana and Nahuel from Zyncro. Seeing as though the use of the #zyn hashtag, everyone on the Zyncro team could read about my experiences.
Moral: Never give up! Fight until the end and if necessary, change your plans along the way in order to reach your objectives.