On Wednesday, we left home at 6.30 in the morning, and, after thirteen and a half hours of waiting for airplanes, flying, and waiting in airport queues, we arrived in Abu Dhabi at nine pm their time. We were tiiiired, and we had a 14 hour wait beforethe flight to Mumbai. It promised to be a very, very long night.
One of the Etihad ground staff suggested a hotel, but we have South African passports and no visas for Abu Dhabi, so we couldn’t leave the airport. What to do? We began wandering the hallways, looking fora quiet nook to wait in. The idea of a hotel room had, however, lodged itself firmly in my brain, and that is what I was hoping for.
The concept of transit hotels is new to me – maybe because they are a newish idea, but far more likely because I have always traveled on such a tight budget that sitting on an airport bench for 14 hours would have been the only option. Not this time, though, and after a great deal of wandering and being turned away from various airline and first class lounges, we found a hotel.
Except that its signage announced it as a first and gold class transit hotel, leading us to believe that we would, once again, be turned away. By now it was almost eleven and we were ready to give up. But I couldn’t, not when we were so close to a hot shower and a bed for the night. So I mustered the last of my courage, climbed the forbidding staircase, and asked the receptionist if we could stay…
“Of course, madam! You are welcome!”
I have never been so grateful for a bed and a shower, and the possibility of place to do some asana practice to relieve my flight-wearied muscles.
Moral of the story? How often do we give up, just as we are on the brink of achieving our goal? Far too often, methinks. And this is also yoga: persist, as Patanjali says in a number of different ways in the Sutra’s, and you will make your own serendipity.
PS I will try to post some pics of the awesome Abu Dhabi airport from Chennai, where we are headed this afternoon.
PPS. We flew Etihad, and I have to say they have so far been one of the best airlines I have ever flown. Remember them next time you need to to do make some monster carbon emissions!
PPPS: Thanks for the suggestions about the carbon offests – trees it is!