Changing the ticket to flight through Johannesburg to Amsterdam was horribly expensive: 6000 euros (single economy ticket).
I went for it. If all’s well the customer is paying.
The ride to JFK was very stressful. We underestimated the travel time to JFK during rush hour. So I rushed out of the car into the checkin, just to find out the flight to Johannesburg is cancelled. A large row of malinformed people waiting.
A small boyish girl eventually informed me.
Then I discovered that the travel agency had made an error changing my original return flight to Amsterdam to go through Joburg. I was not booked on the original flight. And therefore could not get a ticket for the alternative flight via Atlanta they offer.
In the very noisy departure hall I called my travel agency. They could do nothing else than arrange the Marriott close to JFK while making arrangements for me.
In the Yellow Cab we passed a movie scene: a bunch of people around a fire in an oil drum.
Contact with the agency in the hotel room. They arranged an alternative flight for the next day.
Checked out at about twelve and back to the airport with the Yellow Cab.
At JFK, the driver gave me a blank receipt. He grinned: ‘Now you expense a million dollars’, put my suitcase on the pavement and jumped back in the car.
At the Delta desk the price for the new ticket had gone up from 2900 the agency promised, to 4200 euros. I did get a very helpful lady from Delta, and a ticket in return. That totaled up the total flying cost for this trip at 6000 euros.
In the bookshop I bought The God of Small Things, by Arundhati Roy.
The flight was less difficult than expected, but I also slept less than expected. On the other hand, I watched three movies: Bewitched (crap), Batman Begins and Caché. Caché with the most beautiful woman on earth: Juliette Binoche. I finished The God of Small Things too. Wonderful, though in my mind I associate it with the dreamy state of half-consciousness I was in while reading the book.
I checked in at the unavoidable Sandton Sun and Towers hotel. Villamoura, the restaurant in the hotel is an absolute must. Their calamari is exquisite. I collapsed after that.