A Comedy Of Errors

Amsterdam Travel Blog

 › entry 88 of 94 › view all entries

As some of you know, I’m not much of a morning person and so getting up this morning at stupid o’clock (also known as 4.30am), I’m prone to do things in my tired state which leads to lapses in concentration.

After boarding the flight in Bucharest (which ended up being another Tarom flight so no crossword for Saskia), I spent the majority of the flight sleeping.  I had taken out my book to read, but in reality the hum of the engine lulled me to sleep. 

I arrived into Amsterdam and in my hurry to return back to Deurne, I got my bag and put on my coat, found my hat that I had misplaced during the flight and hightailed it to passport control.  I was one of the first and chuckled to myself.  I would be out of the airport and on the train to Eindhoven in no time.  Of course, I had neglected to take into account human error; namely MY error.

While I was waiting for the baggage carousel to start turning, I noticed a woman sitting and reading which led me to ponder, ‘I wonder where my book is?’  The answer was not one that I had wanted – after a frenzied look through my bag, I realised it was on the plane.

Quickly rushing to the KLM service desk (who I might add were inundated with passengers who had missed connections due to the snow), and the manager telephoned someone who would call someone else who would in turn call us up in the baggage area. 

Sitting patiently and people watching is something I can do, and I think I do it rather well.  However, after waiting over an hour for a reply I was getting a little restless and decided to save time and change my €20 note into coins.  (I needed coins for the train ticket machine.)  After being told by the bank they couldn’t do this – I got most confused - a bank unable, but I suspect, unwilling to break my note.  So I returned to my seat and waited for a phone call giving me good news.  It never happened.

I think I need to clarify this last statement – I’m not sitting there for eternity, a phone call did indeed occur, but it just wasn’t with good news.  My book was gone so if anyone out there finds a copy of ‘The Three Emperors’ please send it my way.  It’s a riveting tale about the three men, Kaiser Wilhelm, King George and Tsar Nicholas and their role in causing the outbreak of World War I.  I found it a good read and I’m eager to find out how the Russian Royal family escapes their house arrest from the Bolsheviks in 1917.  I’m rooting for the Romanovs.

So after waiting for no reason, I left the terminal and made my way to the train ticket office where I had to wait, again, to change some money.  The woman behind the desk wasn’t all that keen to change my euro note to coins but after literally pleading with her, she finally relented.

While I was queuing to purchase a ticket, I dropped one of the coins, and when I returned to the machine, a young person of questionable bathing habits, pushed in front of me and then proceeded to take a long time making his train ticket purchase all the while smirking at my misfortune.  After calling out to his mates and getting them tickets, he turned from the machine and dropped his change.  Quietly satisfied, I smirked my rebuttal in his direction.

Because I hadn’t experienced enough errors today, I walked the distance from the ticket machine to the only board that provides train track information.  Of course because I needed to use it, and the way today had been going, it was not operational.  Clearly annoyed I did my best stalking impression whilst lugging my backpack to the train track I had used several times before, and here I waited and waited.

Finally after 20 minutes of waiting; the activity I’ve excelled in today, I was finally given the information I was hoping for – Eindhoven Spoor 2 departs 14:44.  Not a bad effort as I arrived in Amsterdam at 12.10.

So here I am, on the train, riding through some lovely countryside that looks very festive.  Snow can be seen everywhere, beside the train tracks, in gardens and fields and on the roofs of houses and businesses.  The scenery lends itself well to the time of the year - the festive season, and with Sint Klaas arriving on Sunday, it means I don’t have too long a wait for him.  But then I think after today’s efforts I have proved that I’m quite the professional waiter.

Tot straks from the train

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photo by: pearcetoyou