The Bridge in Between
It’s that time again! StevenWorldWide is jetting off to another piece of the world. This time we are embarking on a journey to Thailand. However, this blog post is about the great 10-hour layover that I had in Paris France at the Charles de Gaulle airport.
The daunting thing about layovers is that you don’t really know what to do with all of that down time. I incidentally got lost in the airport trying to find my terminal and once I did, I noticed that the outside lead to what I assumed to be an abandoned airstrip (idk, that’s what it looked like to me). In addition, I didn’t really do any kind of research on what to do with a long layover. I figured time was relative so I could just imagine myself through the 10 hours like some kind of meditation trick. I was wrong. Time is very real and it is stagnant if you are not having fun.
Luckily, there are many things to do in the Charles de Gaulle airport. First, they have a completely free airport lounge area for people who have those exhaustingly long layovers. This area comes complete with WiFi, a library and places to eat. While I did not partake, there was mini-airport hotel inside the facility for people to take advantage. So for those who have the funds go forth and treat yourself.
What I did take advantage of was the arcade. And this wasn’t the same kind of arcade I had from my youth. This was a literal fleet of Playstation 4s hooked up to TV’s all lined up to play demo versions of the latest games. Next thing you know, hours have passed by and I was satiated. There was also one old arcade game with one of those horizontal flat screened games where people played games like PacMan, Galaga and the original Donkey Kong (with Mario jumping over the barrels).
Finally, another thing one can do during a 10-hour lay over that could be satisfying is sleep. After a long flight and a shift of 7 to 8 time zones I can personally attest that you body clock will be off and you may need to actually sleep. Luckily, the Charles de Gaulle is not like other airports where you have to settle for sleeping in a chair or an oddly placed bench. This airport has fleets of lounge like beds for people to sleep on while they wait. It was definitely a rewarding experience.
In short, lay overs are a great opportunity to see what these major airports are all about. Millions of dollars are spent on the airports to make sure passengers have a safe, comfortable and somewhat enjoyable transition between where they started and where they will end. So you owe it to yourself to go and see what they spent their money on.