We made it to Berlin Tuesday morning after what, as I had anticipated, was a wonderfully pleasurable flight, relaxing in the sauna, playing a couple of rousing games of ping pong down on the recreation deck, sipping mai-tais with the crew, and singing karaoke in the lounge. In my dreams.
Actually, as I really predicted, we were stuffed into our seats like sausage meat into pig intestines in the economy section of the 757-B. Periodically, they brought us drinks and what they claimed was food a couple of times. At one point during the "meal" a young, waiflike boy rose up at the rear of the plane clutching his small bowl and stating in his tiny but plaintive voice, "I want more." "More?!!" Bumble roared. "No one ever asks for more!" Well no, actually, that's in a scene from Oliver, but I presume you get my drift.
Sometime after feeding us they started running a movie up in first class, while in coach, they passed around a View Master with a series of pictures of various midwestern barns having "See Rock City" painted on their roofs. (The "3D" effect in that View Master is truly amazing. It's just like being there, standing in front of those barns. What won't they think of next?) America is truly a great country!
Well, once again, I must confess that I have been, how you say, pulling the leg. Ha,ha. Actually, we were treated with the very high minded and artfully understated film version of the venerable Starsky and Hutch. Again, I say, America is... yada, yada, yada.
The seat was so roomy and comfortable, the atmosphere so relaxing, I must have slept for as long as 10 to 12 minutes during the seven-plus hour flight. The only part of me that got any real sleep was my butt which remained pretty much numb for the duration. I did get an aisle seat as I had hoped, but of course that meant I got whacked in the arm or shoulder every time someone passed by in the aisle. I have the tomato juice and coffee stains to prove it.
Nevertheless, we did eventually land at Tegel Airport in Berlin with most of our parts and luggage more or less intact. We were also more or less on time, and my son was there to pick us up. After a cup-o-joe at the airport Starbucks (where else?) we drove into the city for a bit of sightseeing. We wound up at the Jewish Museum. Here, the story takes on a bit of a turn.