We learnt about the French Air Traffic Control strike at the check-in at Easy Jet.
The young girl who checked us in seemed surprised that we did not know about this but warned us and prepared us with a strategy for getting a good seat on a near-full plane. The last time we used Easy Jet we had no idea about the first-come-first-seated policy, and we found ourselves the last to board, and walking up and down the aisle three times up, and three times back, and failing to find a vacant seat.
This time we got ourselves to the front of the line while all other passengers were seemingly unaware of our advantage.
When we came to board, we were surprised to be ushered onto a bus and not onto a plane. We were therefore the first on the bus, and when that bus arrived at the bottom of the steps where the plane was parked, we found ourselves the last off the bus and once again the last to board the plane, where we found seasoned Easy jet passengers sprawling selfishly over more than a fair share of free space. Consequently the Monks found ourselves separated once again.
Once we were all finally seated, the plane door was secured but nevertheless we were going nowhere.
The pilot came on and made an incoherent mumbled announcement. The only words I heard were “one and a half hours” and this was the amount of time we were due to wait on the tarmac, before we were expected to depart.
People started to get up out of their seats and were immediately told to sit down. We could have waited in the departure lounge but Easyjet wanted us on the plane where we could be controlled.
Mrs Monk asked for refreshments in the interval, but was told that nothing would be served until we were in the air and no, it would not be “free” unless we were delayed for more than three hours. She then noticed the Pilot through the door to his cabin, tucking into his lunch.