Stress less, travel more

But what do you do when the travel stresses you? For a holiday which was meant to alleviate my stress, I’m feeling more stressed than when I left!

First our flight from Cologne to Riga was cancelled. When I requested a refund, they rescheduled our flight to leave from Munich. Which is great, unless you are staying in Bonn, approximately 557kms away from Munich. And the airline refused to change our flight to leave from Dusseldorf instead. So, we had to book our own flights from Dusseldorf to Munich and a hotel at the airport in Dusseldorf to get to Munich in time for the morning flight.

Then, when we arrived in Riga, my suitcase was split open along one of the seams. So, I had to buy a new suitcase. Given that we didn’t know Riga at all, we stopped at the first shopping centre we found and bought a suitcase from the only shop selling suitcases. It set me back $329 which I hadn’t counted on.

On with the journey, still looking forward to our Scandinavian adventure. Riga was beautiful, as was Helsinki and Stockholm. Each city was special in their own way, I’ll try to write about our trip in greater detail down the track.

From Stockholm, we flew to Tromsø in Northern Norway. We had a transit stop in Oslo. When we arrived in Tromsø, we discovered two of our suitcases, mine included, had been lost in transit, presumably at Oslo airport. The staff at Tromsø airport were decidedly unsympathetic. Thankfully, the staff at the Radisson Blu were as helpful as they could be. We checked in, the two of us without luggage did what we could to freshen up and we headed to the Tromsø Safari desk to find out about our Northern Lights tour that night. They told us it had been cancelled.

Now, I totally understand that weather conditions cannot be controlled and it would have been wrong of them to take us on a tour when they knew we would be unable to see the lights. But coming straight after lost luggage, I was distraught.

The next day, our luggage had arrived at the airport but apparently the staff there had to wait six hours after 11.30am to deliver it to us. When the lady at the front desk of the hotel told me this, I did burst into tears. She was fantastic. She organised the airport to put our suitcases in a taxi there and then. Even though I had to pay for the taxi, I was grateful to finally have clean clothes to change into and the use of my Natio products. Lesson learned – always pack a few things in your backpack just in case.

Up till this point, although being tired and slightly grumpy, I still felt in control of the situation and determined to enjoy the rest of our journey. Tromsø was fantastic. On our second night we went on a Northern Lights tour to a husky farm and managed to see the lights. Then off to Bergen, which is truly a beautiful place and one I hope to visit again.

Except it was in Bergen my phone crashed and I lost all my apps, my photos, videos and all connection to any means of contacting anyone except through Facebook messenger. But that’s a story for next week’s post.

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