Archive for July 31st, 2011

To start off our Italy trip, we successfully departed Houston and landed in Amsterdam, where we were scheduled to have a 8 hour layover. Plenty of time to leave the airport and see a few things. Or so we thought.

It took us about an hour to make sure that we were checked in for our next flight, and that our luggage would indeed be checked through. After freshening up from being on a plane for 8 hours, and being all smart, we left our carry-on luggage in a locker just outside the terminal we’d be flying out of, and then proceeded to leave. Only, it took us more than an hour to actually figure out how to leave the airport. To say the Amsterdam airport is huge is the understatement of the year. Massive more accurately tries to describe it.

So when we finally got out of the airport, figured out how to buy train tickets, we had around 3 hours to kill. We ate a quick lunch at a little pub place, navigated through the city, crossed canal after canal and finally made it to the I Amsterdam letters near the Rijksmuseum, which was probably the farthest part of the city from the train station. We took a few pictures and then it was time to head back to the airport already. I’ll let the pictures speak for themselves.

We made it back to the airport with plenty of time to spare. Except we figured out that we entered the airport inside our terminal. Great! But, our carry on luggage was still outside. And it was nearly impossible to exit the terminal into another terminal.

First, we asked two machine gun armed police officers, who directed us to the exit. Then, we asked some nice airport employees who told us just to go through passport control. But passport control, just looking at our destination, told us we needed to go to a different place to be able to pass through. We could practically see the lockers where our bags were at from passport control. Then after a little intervention of the airport staff, passport control reluctantly let us through.

We got our bags, made it through passport control and security again, and finally were all the way at our gate when we noticed our gate changed, so we had to trek ALL THE WAY BACK ACROSS THE AIRPORT. AGAIN. For what seemed like the 100th time. I even remember thinking at one point, that I was so happy we wouldn’t have to walk that stretch of the airport ever again. Boy was I wrong.

There is no way we walked any less than 3 miles in the airport. (After at least 3 miles walking around in Amsterdam). But in the end, we didn’t miss our flight to Rome and all that walking was like practice for the rest of our trip.


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