Charles De Gaulle Airport

Made it in one piece. Our ride was an Airbus 380, which is a humongous plane. I’ll post a picture later. I rode on the upper deck, in row 93. Never been in a plane with 93 rows before. They served food, which is the first complimentary airline meal I’ve had in 20 years. Reinforces my opinion of airline food – even the French. They did provide wine, but my choice was gone by the time they got to me and I got to eat an unspectacular pasta. The cheese was “pasturized process cheese food, Brie flavor.” I wonder what the cheesemakers of the Brie region, not far from here, think of their national airline serving such an atrocity. I slept poorly and read about half of Robert Massie’s biography of Catherine the Great.

When we got here, we got to go through security again, removing shoes, computers separate in bags, belts off, all the drill. I got frisked. They don’t trust TSA, I guess.

The airport is like all the other airports – same deal as Dulles. The spectacular architecture of the main terminal, created as the entrance-point for the nation in the modernist 1960s, has become totally overloaded with today’s flood of air travelers, and so they have built these efficient but unspectacular terminals. One thing about this, though – like Versailles, bathrooms are hard to find. I guess we’re supposed to be like Louis XIVs courtiers and do our business in any convenient corner…  No, I found the john eventually, quite some distance down the concourse.

They also have free wifi.

They have a big shopping area with all sorts of Parisian names you’ve heard of – Hermes, Louis Vuitton – and one Seattle name, Starbucks. I guess they are ubiquitous now.

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