Saturday, January 31, 2015

Made It Home!

inside Charles de Gaulle Airport K gates terminal 2E
I made it home yesterday from my European Winter vacation 2015! But it was not an easy trip To say the least.
I was scheduled to fly on a KLM flight from Rome back to Amsterdam. Then fly Amsterdam back to Toronto. Well that was the plan. But some good plans cannot be executed, as planed! Mother Nature was in a foul mood on the evening of January 29th. With rain and high winds in Rome. These conditions caused delays at Rome's Fiumicino Airport. A 40 minute delay was announced on my KLM flight to Amsterdam. Which meant I had no way of making the connecting flight to Toronto.  

So  then KLM changed my flying itinerary and put me on an Air France Flight to Paris. So I would then be able transfer to a Paris flight bound for Toronto. It was a great idea but it also didn't work. As the Paris flight from Rome was also delayed 1 hour and 15 minutes before it departed for Charles de Gaulle Airport located in Paris.

This now made it very unlikely that I would now be able to make my Air France connection in Paris. To get me home to Toronto. When I arrived Iate at the Paris Airport. I had to hurry to the other side of the airport to try and make the Toronto bound flight. It was not an easy job. The distance to get to the Toronto gate was a long distance from the gate where the Rome flight had culminated.

Sure enough I was too late for the Air France Toronto flight. Things were not going well. Was I going to make it back home? Lucky for me the Air France representative was happy to help. The friendly French lady then booked me on a Air France flight to Boston. Then from Boston's Logan Airport I would then fly on an Air Canada flight to Toronto. The Air France representative also gave me a voucher for 8 Euros. To buy a snack before I left for Boston.

I then had some time to relax, and try and regain my strength and composure. So I could get ready to continue my crusade to try and make it back home.

The Air France flight to Boston was enjoyed! Friendly service and very good food is an Air France trade mark. I arrived at Boston's Logan Airport on time. It was now 6:30 EST. Before I left the Air France flight. I was informed that my checked suitcase was missing and not on the Air France flight. I would have to put a claim in for my missing suitcase on my arrival in Toronto.

Now I had to get to terminal B1 at Logan Airport to make my Toronto bound flight. They use buses at Logan Airport to change terminal buildings. I got to the Toronto flight without anymore problems. When I got to my seat on the Air Canada flight on the Embraer E190. I was seated beside a lovely young woman named Jess. It was a real pleasure to me you Jess! Jess and I enjoyed wonderful conversation all the way back to Toronto. The final flight of the day went quickly and was enjoyed. I make it back to Toronto at 10:30 EST. In good spirits and happy to finally be back home.

Some of the facts!

The flight flight from Rome to Paris was on an Air France Airbus 340. The distance was 687.11 miles or 1105.76 KM. Flying time is 2 hour and 10 minutes.

The flight from Paris to Boston was on a Boeing 777. The distance was 3434.94 miles or 5528 KM. The flying time was 7 hours and 15 minutes. The 777 is a beautiful flying aircraft and is very conformable to fly in on a long flight.

The final flight was with Air Canada on a Embraer E190. The distant from Boston to Toronto is 430.11 miles or 692.2 KM, and the flying time was 1 hour and 40 minutes.

The total trip home was 4552.16 miles or 7325.99 KM. Total flying time was 11 hours and 5 minutes. I was at 4 different airports. Rome Fiumicino, Paris Charles de Gaulle, Boston Logan, and finally Toronto Pearson.

I did make it home in one Peace. I am the "Travel Wolfe"
photos from Rome's Fiumicino Airport

Happy to report my suitcase also made it back home. It was delivered to my home on Thursday February 5, by Air Canada. All the contents were in tack and undamaged. It looks like the bag made it to Paris. But was not put on the fight to Boston. Happy I got my suitcase and belongings back!

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

The Ancient Greek Theater of Taormina

Today the final full day of my winter trip to Europe 2015. I was planing to go and visit the town of "Savoca" where the Godfather movies were made. However the bus connection to get there was a concern, and again the weather turned rainy and cold. So I scraped that idea.
I finished my stay to Taormina with a visit to a visit to Ancient Greek Theater. This historic theater that was originally designed and built by the Greeks in the 7th century BC. But later rebuilt by the Roman Empire. Is one of the best existing historic sites located in Sicily. Sadly most of the original stone bench seating has been replaced by modern seating. Which does hurt the appearance of this brilliant piece of history. Hoping that a proper restoration job will be completed in the future.
The major appeal of this ancient theater is it's location in Taormina. When you are seated in the ancient theater. All the spectators get a beautiful view of the Ionian coastline and also a beautiful view of Mt. Etna. Sadly again it was a rainy, cool and cloudy day here in Taormina. So no fantastic view of Mt. Etna was possible. I did take some photos of my experience visiting this ancient place. I will have fond memories of being there!

video posted on You Tube-

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

The Beautiful Garden!

In the afternoon today. I spent some special time enjoying the "Public Gardens" in Taormina. Which are really beautiful to enjoy! This spectator city gardens. Which is one of the finest anywhere in the world. Was established by a lady named Florence Trevelyan. It is truly a living testament to this lady who was responsible for creating so much beauty! I have included the link of the history of Florence Trevelyan and my pictures I took today enjoy the Beautiful Garden!

Mt. Etna!

It has been a great trip. But I have had to endure some very inclement weather. Lots of rain and damp weather has been my nemesis! However you have to take what is thrown your way and still always try hard to enjoy a good time!
Because of the poor weather conditions during my days spent visiting Sicily. I have had a difficult time trying to photograph Mt. Etna. I just had to bring home some photos of this prestigious volcano.

Here is some information on Mt. Etna and my photos I managed to take today. Mt. Etna is the tallest active volcano located on European soil at 3329.6 m or 10,924 ft. Mt. Etna is the highest mountain in Italy south of the Alps. Mt. Etna is almost in a constant state of activity making this volacano one of the most active volcanoes in the world.

video showing a Mt. Etna past eruption.

Some more photos of Mt. Etna! The first one is getting close to the city of Catania. The second photo was taken from Catania International Airport. Both photos were taken on January 29, 2015.

Castelmola- A View From The Clouds!

The mountain town of Castelmola is located 1800 feet above sea level. It was an exciting drive by bus from Taormina to reach this quaint and tiny town. I just hung out and enjoyed some peace and the gorgeous views overlooking; Taormina, the ocean, and Mt. Etna which was still covered by clouds. I do know know that Mt. Etna is there! I have included my best photos from this rare experience!
Looking down at Taormina!

You can easily see prior lava flows from Mt. Etna in this photo!