Neil's wheelless 22‏

22. May 29, 2011.

Friends;

The guy can’t catch a break.

Neil was supposed to leave Istanbul today. He called from the airport at 7:30 PM our time (5:30 AM, his time) to report that he had gotten to the airport OK, 3 hours early, and his baggage was all checked in. We wished him a happy flight.

And then, events conspired.

Neil called us again at 11:30 PM, our time (9:30 AM, his time) to report the Turkish airline people were on strike. He had no knowledge as to who exactly was on strike or why. He hoped to take off within the hour – which would give him plenty of time to make the connecting flight in Frankfurt.

This morning we looked on the internet and found this:

“Turkish Airlines employees staged a strike here on Tuesday to protest against a draft law which banned airline strikes.

“The airlines have already cancelled 104 flights due to the strike, which is expected to last until midnight.

“Security forces have been dispatched to the airport as a precautionary measure and journalists with cameras were not allowed to go inside the airport.”

Questions that come to the inquiring mind:

1. Why did they take his luggage if they were on strike?

2. Are there other airlines that go from Istanbul to Frankfurt within the hour?

3. Will the other airlines accept a Turkish airline ticket as payment in full?

4. Will Neil ever see his luggage again?

5. Will I ever see Neil again?

6. Is War and Peace, the novel Neil selected for light airplane reading, long enough to keep him entertained for however long this takes?

7. Will we have to dip into the “Iranian Hostage Fund” to get him home?

No details at 11.

-Steve

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