Have you ever had a delay induced long term stay in an airport? My wife once got to enjoy the day as an airport guest as a result of her flight being canceled after they damaged the aircraft fuselage by running into the terminal building structure. Ooppppssssieeeee!
So why am I on this track today, you may ask? Did you ever see that movie The Terminal? It was 24 years ago today that the actual guy who evidently inspired the movie began his stay in Terminal 1 at one of my personal favorites, CDG! He was an Iranian refugee at the time trying to get to the UK. It seems the story is that his briefcase with all his paperwork was stolen in Paris so the UK refused to allow him to enter and sent him back to CDG, where he remained until 2006!
It just got me thinking about a lot of things. Back in 1988 when this happened the TSA didn’t exist, so getting on a flight without any ID was not out of the question. Cell phones in 1988 were 1G and not very common. The internet was barely in the first stages of development. Obviously, all of those developments in tech and in the airline industry would make it nearly impossible for something like this to happen today, right? So why was the guy stuck in CDG until 2006? It appears to be a very long and tedious political and bureaucratic mess, which isn’t likely to happen to the average person. All the steps we take to ensure smooth travel connections sure seem even more sensible though when you think about the possibility of getting stuck for not just hours or days but months and years! I hope you have a nice flight today and get to where you want to go. – René