Thursday, July 10, 2008

Churches, Delays and the Austrian Question

Mum spent two weeks here in Armenia, she spent time in Kapan with me while I worked and we also travelled around a little. I sent her to Iran (well the border anyway – they wouldn’t let people like her in there!!) and to an amazing monestry a couple of hours drive away with the boy from work who I am mildly suspicious that he might have a crush on me (think 27 bloody roses a few months back!)

I saw more old churches than I really needed to, and I am sure that even mum was a little jaded by them too. They are very impressive but I think there should be a warning attached that there are only so many you can see before boredom kicks in… this warning may also be attached to similarly old cultural sites in Italy to – but more on that soon.

The rigmarole at the airport proved that you can put a first rate modern airport in a developing country and you can give them all the fancy equipment in the world but when it turns to crap then all passengers will stand in line for hours delaying all flights until the ‘system’ gets running again. This also means that passengers miss connecting flights – and Mum and I get to stay in Vienna for a day. So we wandered around Vienna for a day and saw some pretty stuff, ate some nice chocolate torte. Austrians are supposed to be very serious, and it is said that they lack imagination and/or sense of humor which could perhaps be illustrated a few hours later back at the airport as we are leaving for Rome

Security lady standing at the xray machine
“please take off your belt”
Me - ah, ha, actually this belt is made of plastic
Her - Yes that’s nice but you will have to take it off
Me - But my belt is made of plastic and fabric (me showing her the construction)
Her - Yes, I can see that, but it is policy that you must take it off and put it through the machine
Me - But my belt is made of PLASTIC!!
Her - Please take off your belt and put it though the machine (the que behind me is growing longer)

Basically, we went back and forward, me getting more animated trying to explain to a very nice, polite, STUPID woman a that my belt wasn’t belt – and eventually taking off the blinking belt and putting the blinking belt thorugh the machine, muttering and cursing not-so-quietly under my breath.
So, the Austrian Question - is this security woman an anomaly in Austria? Is litral interpretation of all regulations - despite obvious absurdity the usual??? I have heard some rumors about Austrians but some more investigations might be necessary!

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