“Travels to a Different Time” : 2September2022: Toronto to Athens: Getting There is no Longer Half the Fun!

We booked this trip from Toronto to Athens on points. I wonder if we have been penalized by Air Canada for booking on points as when checking in on-line exactly 24 hours prior to departure as permitted by Air Canada in the entire plane there are three seats available? What’s that old Greek proverb “the fish stinks from the head down”? Love sitting in the last row of the plane by the galley and the continual vacuum flushes of the toilets which by the way are filthy to start and revolting after 10 hours. In all this COVID hysteria dire warnings about getting to the airport 3 to 4 hours prior to departure. Arrived three and a half hours prior to departure and never whizzed through security so fast! With too much time to spare dropped by Premium Plaza Lounge close to our departure gate and a wait of 45 minutes to be admitted and the wait certainly was not warranted. Some type of chicken in a cream sauce and a pathetic looking pasta. The chili wasn’t bad. The Guinness tap is not working and the beer is Molson Canadian (SHUDDER!). The salad is one that after a few mouthfuls you wonder if you made a mistake. Food poisoning not a great way to start a trip. Lowest quality spirits. The Muzak was annoying although the Christmas song in September was “unique”.

All passengers were masked as required by Pearson Airport. Given the multitude of lost checked in baggage in Europe carry on seemed the rule. An Air Canada passenger agent asked for complimentary check in. This was greeted by howls of laughter.

The seating on the plane was sardine in “Economy”. On my last flight on Air Canada in 2019 I had 4 inches of room between my knees and the seat in front yet now knees jammed up against the seat in front and twisted like a pretzel. The cabin is dark and gloomy. Dinner was a rock hard stole white roll, frozen butter, slimy pasta in sauce that might have been canned tomato soup and cheese that had the consistency of melted plastic. Betty Crocker chocolate cake for dessert and the cheapest French plonk as wine. Air Canada can’t have the pride and decency to serve Canadian wine? For breakfast a stale croissant and some yogurt. Arrived at Athens airport having to wait 20 minutes to get a gate. Air Canada Economy is like travelling in a portable dank basement. So glad to escape.

Published by Robert K Stephen (CSW)

Robert K Stephen writes about food ,drink, travel, film, and lifestyle issues. He also has published serialized novels "Life at Megacorp", "Virus # 26, "Reggie the Egyptian Rescue Dog" and "The Penniless Pensioner" Robert was the first associate member of the Wine Writers’ Circle of Canada. He also holds a Mindfulness Certification from the University of Leiden and the University of Toronto. Be it Spanish cured meat, dried fruit, BBQ, or recycled bamboo place mats, Robert endeavours to escape the mundane, which is why he has established this publication. His motto is, "Have Story, Will Write."

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