Saturday, November 6, 2010

Monday, November 1, 2010 – Fiumicino, Italy – 60s - Rain

Rainy, windy, and cold…

Slept so so…

The breakfast at the hotel was OK – cold cereal and milk, croissants, rolls, other sweets.  They did have an automated coffee dispenser so I had a Cappuccino (no decaf), which was very good. 

Our shuttle departed early at 9:10 AM.  Checking our luggage at the airport was very fast and efficient and soon we were at our gate for our flight to Heathrow.  There was no plane at our gate but it was still pretty early.

 Shuttle to FCO (Small)

In the Shuttle

The plane arrived about 11:30 AM so it was clear that we would not make our 11:55 AM Departure.  Our flight was to arrive at LHR at about 1:40 PM and our connection to ORD was scheduled for 3:30 PM so – if the flight got turned around quickly -  we had some wiggle room. 

BA549 A320 (Small)

BA549 Airbus A320 arrives at our gate

It was very complicated but we did not get on the plane until about 12:30 PM and did not take off (weather, air traffic control, who knows?) until about 1:45 PM.  Flying time to LHR was 2.5 hours so theoretically (factoring in the time difference), we would miss our connection with AA91.  The flight was smooth – and they did serve us a tasty egg salad sandwich – but we did land about 3:40 PM local time.  AA91, our flight, had departed about 10 minutes earlier. 

We went to the rebooking desk at British Air in a different terminal.  The clerk was very helpful but indicated we had also missed the 4:15 PM non stop flight and there were no other flights out until tomorrow.  She did book us on a British Air Flight (BA295) at 11:45 AM the next morning – she also gave us vouchers for the Renaissance Hotel Heathrow, two dinners, two breakfasts, and two roundtrip shuttle tickets.  Our bags would be held and would be retagged when we checked in tomorrow.  While we wanted to get home, it had gotten so late that staying over gratis was a much better option.

LHR waiting for Hoppa Bus (Small)

Waiting for the Hoppa Bus (Hotel Shuttle)

We checked into the Renaissance Hotel (a very nice hotel) and got our vouchers. Our room was just a few hundred feet from one of the active runways but the double paned windows made the room pretty quiet.  We texted the kids to let them know our new plans and took a few minutes to relax before getting something to eat.

Heathrow from Renaissance Hotel Window (Small)

View from our hotel room of Heathrow

At 6:00 PM, we were the first two customers at Duos Restaurant for Dinner.  It was a very nice buffet, with Salad Bar, Rolls, Pasta, Fish, Side Dishes, and Desserts.  A very good – non-British type – meal.

E at Duos for Dinner (Small)

Waiting for Duos to open

Back to room to rest up.  We are all set for tomorrow.

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