Christmas Cheer   // gina

I am sitting here in Geneva airport 28 hours after leaving our home in Chiavenna to fly back to Dublin for Christmas. Obviously this side trip to Geneva was unplanned as our original flight was from Milan airport. After hours of delay at Milan the flight was cancelled and I was thrown into panic at the thought of missing Christmas with the family. We were told “Sorry. If you can find space on another flight we’ll change your tickets for you, but if not tough.” Well there’s no Aer Lingus desk in Milan airport so the only options for finding another flight are by yourself through the internet or the call centre. Of course from Milan all seats are booked up until well after Christmas. It was a wonderful example of the Smyth world web in action: Me in Milan on the phone to Darragh in London, who was checking flights online for us. Jeff sitting beside me talking to Dad in Dublin who was concurrently talking to an Aer Lingus lady on the phone. Seats were found on a flight leaving from Geneva for the next day, and all of a sudden Jeff and I were back in our car driving under the pissing rain for 4,5 hrs, through the Mont Blanc tunnel (a first for Jeff 🙂 and on to Geneva. We spent the night in a hotel near the airport and have been back in the airport for 4 hours so far this morning. Currently we are on hold (again) as our flight is indefinitely delayed. Which means right now we don’t know where we will be for Christmas morning  🙁

Airports are of course great places for people watching. Especially with the madness of cancelled and delayed flights left, right and centre. Kids running riot all over the place, bringing smiles to the faces of otherwise disappointed folk. The arrivals area has been completely closed down for a while after they found an abandoned bag. Jeff and I promptly moved ourselves far away from said bag. Just in case. We find ourselves in a type of Irish neighbourhood, as slowly but surely us Irish emigrants returning home, claim the comfiest seats to be found while we settle in for the long wait. There are 2 little birds fluttering in and out of the rafters above our heads, who have found prime feeding grounds in this airport restaurant. So for the moment we live in this weird airport world, like so many people have done in the past week…

So as a time-filler and distraction tactic (especially for me) we have been browsing through the photos stored on Jeff’s computer. Thinking about all the nice times that have been had over the past 9 months in Chiavenna. So here are a few photos of some of the visitors we’ve had the pleasure of welcoming into our new home. There are more in the photo section of the blog. We’ve also put up some of our new friends that we’ve made here. You’ll also find some from our short visit to Jeff’s family in Virginia just over a month ago, to celebrate his Grandmother’s birthday and an early Thanksgiving. It was as heart-warming as ever. We wish they weren’t so far away, but that seems to be story of our lives together.

Christmas being such a time for family and friends we are thinking of you all. The Christmas rush of the past few weeks has now stalled for a while as we sit and wait. Lots of time for reflection and thinking about each of you and where you are and what you’re up to. Hopefully ( I say that with a lump in my throat) we will get to see some of you over the next few days, but if the gods of dublin airport remain angry, we will see you again soon. Lots of love and hugs to you all around the world. From the two Beans in Geneva airport on Christmas Eve 😉

The expansive view

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