Wednesday, September 03, 2008

Strange reason, Customer service,Alcala, Gazpacho

I am sorry that I could not post my 99th Blogpost Sunday. The reason was that I had missed my connecting flight and was on Air flying back home from London. The reason for missing the connecting flight was strange!!! as below.

I was to take the 0630 pm flight from Madrid to London and connect to Bombay for the 2150 Hrs. I reached Barajas Terminal 4 around 4pm and was told to take the 1730Hrs BA flight which was delayed by an hour, thus giving me a chance to reach London early. We boarded at 1830 and pushed back. Then to our surprise we were put on hold on edge of the runway for want of a legal requirement for the take off weight which needs to be reported. Unfortunately there was a communication gap between, the flight crew, ground attendendant, Heathrow and Madrid. So we waited for 90 minutes at the edge of the runway. By then the fuel had depleted so we had to return to gate, get the required information, top up fuel and left 3 hrs late. The 630 pm flight long gone. We reached London at 1015 pm with Heathrow wearing a deserted look.

Yes, this gave a chance to interact with the customer service at Heathrow terminal 5. I must thank the Customer service agent Rob Martin who was kind enough to put me on to the next direct flight to Bangalore Saturday evening. I had Jet Airways connection from Bombay to Bangalore.(All this was done to avoid a stop over in London as well as to reach Bangalore early!!!). They also provided me an accomadation at Reniassance airport hotel at Heathrow as well as voucher for travel and breakfast. So I must say that BA did their best. I did stay over. This gave me a chance to explore terminal 5 in detail before boarding the flight. In my opinion the versatality of Terminal 4 is missing in Terminal 5.

I was amazed by the size of Madrid Airport. I am told it is the second largest single terminal building in the world (700,000 Sq Met) after Hong Kong Terminal 1. Yes, the access to the terminal can be confusing as were some of the Highway signs in Madrid. Barcelona was clear, No such issues. So watch out!!!!.

I had a chance to explore the city of Alcala. This is about 20 Kms from Madrid and looks historical with universities. We did spend a couple of days. I had chance to taste the veg tomato soup Gazpacho. Excellent for vegeterians to cool themselves. Yes, it was hot at 104F. The hotel I stayed in Alcala was great with good rooms and Facilities and in calm area away from noise. Good place to relax.

Yes, It is another matter, that we bumped in to plenty of girls with whom you would not like to have encounters!!!!.

Ok, till next week, take it easy and take care; Live conciously.

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