Friday...................Barcelona, Helsinki, to Stockholm

Stockholm Travel Blog

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Leaving Barcelona

Get up at 7 so that I’m packed and ready to check out by half past.  The staff here are great, much friendlier and more helpful than in NY or Madrid.  Get a cab to the airport.  I’m flying Finnair to Helsinki.  There are 24 seats in business class and only me.  The seating is economy, seats don’t even recline, no movie, not even music.  The flight attendant tells me that the difference between business and economy is that nobody can sit in the middle seat in business!  The seats may be economy but there is a lovely flight attendant and the service is business class…..and they even have champagne, not just sparkling white. 

 

Land in Helsinki and when I go to check into Scandinavian Air to fly to Stockholm I’m told that my bag is overweight.

Coming in to Helsinki
  That’s the problem when you do a side flight and the limit is only 20 kg.  They want 6E per kg x 10 kg. 

 

Plan B, take all the heavy stuff out of suitcase and put it into carry on bag.  Go back to check in.  Suitcase is around 21 kg, but hand luggage weighs a ton.  I try to pretend it doesn’t.  As I’m quite early for the flight, the check in guy suggests that I catch the 4:25 instead of the 5:30.  Do I have time?  Yes, go to security check 4, there’s hardly anyone there. 

 

So I go to number 4, but of course there are dozens of people there.

Kelly and Joris
  Finally I’m going through and they’re looking at my bag and I suddenly realize that in my haste I’ve not thought about what things are now in my hand luggage.  Security woman tells me I can’t take through shampoo because the bottle is too big and says that you can’t put liquids into other than their original bottles, which is absolute rubbish.  I put the shampoo in a smaller bottle and go through security again.  Anyway for all the security woman jumping up and down, I only lose an old corkscrew/bottle opener.  They miss other things, including nail scissors, so the whole exercise is really a joke.  The woman also gets excited because my computer, well is it really a puter?  Surprise, surprise, it’s a puter. 

 

I rush to the gate but the plane has left.  I’ve not needed a trolley before, but the hand luggage is really heavy.  I get a trolley and go to get a boarding pass for the original plane I was to take.  15 minutes in that queue.  I get the new boarding pass and the woman checks and says that my luggage hasn’t left, so she arranges for it to go on the plane with me.  I’m told it’s the same departure gate as the other plane.  Go back to the departure gate; it’s now only 15 minutes before the plane is due to leave, but there’s no-one there.

 

Very suspicious, so I go looking for someone official.  Cripes, I’ve only just got the boarding pass, but the gate is wrong.  The required gate is, of course, at the other end of the airport.  Eventually get on with my incredibly heavy bag.  Fortunately it’s only a one hour flight.

 

Land in Stockholm, but no suitcase.  Oh well, because of the luggage weight fiasco, at least I have around 10 kg of luggage with me which I wouldn’t usually have, so that’s handy.  I’m given the requisite overnight package for those whose suitcases don’t arrive with them.

 

Catch a taxi to the hotel, USD82.  It’s a long way, hadn’t realized, 45 km.  Kelly has organized Hotel Clarion Sign which was only opened this year.  She and Joris flew in last night.  We finally catch up about 8; are rooms are on the same floor and close to each other.   Hotel Clarion Sign 2082SEK, around AUD390  for 2 nights.

 

The hotel bar/restaurant area is noisy with music so we decide to find somewhere else to eat, eventually finding a vaguely reasonable Chinese restaurant. Apparently it’s been a horrible cold and wet day in Stockholm and the air could be best described as bracing.  I am rueing all those fantastic restaurants that I passed by in Barcelona.  Can’t even get a glass of wine with dinner; ah well, the company’s the thing.

 

The room’s aircon is set at 20; you can go up or down a maximum of 3 degrees each way.  As I don’t have warm clothing I con the guy on the front desk to bring up a heater for me.  Staff here are very pleasant.  My suitcase hasn’t appeared yet.

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Leaving Barcelona
Leaving Barcelona
Coming in to Helsinki
Coming in to Helsinki
Kelly and Joris
Kelly and Joris
Stockholm
photo by: EmyG