Friday, May 4

Geneva, Day One: Late Arrivals

My friend's invitation to join him in Geneva for the long weekend really couldn't have come at a better time. It was the perfect antidote-cum-reward to the manic hard work of the last few weeks and so I jumped at the chance when he had suggested it. It's also been long overdue; I hadn't been out of the country since Amsterdam last year. A pretty depressing fact, that.

Since I was to catch my flight directly after work, I guess it was inevitable I was going to be late. The fact that I was travelling alone (it was actually the first time I had caught a flight from the UK on my own, ever) didn't help either! I thought I had made it arriving at Heathrow at 16:50 for my 17:35 flight, and even though I had my ticket five minutes later (electronic check-ins rock, no?) I really should have heeded the warnings to come at least an hour before departure.

Security was a nightmare. The process itself was relatively painless, but it still took time to clear the masses of people already there, waiting to start their respective long weekends. My ticket said that my gate would close at 17:15; I got there at 17:18 (my belt in my hand seeing as I didn't have time to put it back on after screening), reassured by the sight of the flight captain boarding the same flight. I had made it and was glad, even after I had realised the flight was going to be delayed till 18:00 anyway.

All stress, be it from the flight or work, was forgotten as soon as I had arrived in Geneva. Since the airport was relatively close to the city, my friend generously offered to meet me there. After checking in and dumping my stuff at the hotel, we went wondering through the streets and taking in the vibe and feel of the place. The lake was pretty nice at night, its famous fountain at full blast (and so prompted the obvious asking of whether anyone could survive being hit by its cannons).

After working up an appetite we ended up at a place near to the hotel - we did the whole fondue thing and although it was okay, we couldn't even finish the single pot between us; I was sweating cheese by the end of it.