Wednesday, 3 July, Zurich to Tallahassee, with swag

Written 4 September 2019

Wednesday morning was when all the passengers scattered. Viking issued a helpful spreadsheet, by stateroom number, of destination, flight time, destination city, carrier, flight number, time of bag pickup, and time of departure from the hotel. Most of us were going to the Zurich airport, but the occupants of 14 staterooms were going by Viking bus to Zermatt for a two-day extension.

For the occupants of the nine staterooms who had to leave the hotel before 7:00 a.m., Viking prepared boxed breakfasts to send with them.

We, and the occupants of 14 other staterooms (we all had flights departing within 15 minutes of each other; ours was at 10:15 a.m., direct to Atlanta), had to have our luggage set out for pickup by 6:30 a.m. and to be on the bus to the airport by 7:30 a.m., so they used the big bus, and I had time for one last buffet breakfast.

At the airport, Viking reps were there to make sure we all found our respective check-in desks and knew where to go after that. On the tram within the airport, which took us to our gate after security, the time between arrival and departure announcements was filled by typically Swiss sound effects: birdsong, cow bells, cows lowing, alpenhorns, even yodeling!

The flight went quickly, because I watched Crimes of Grindelwald, Aquaman, Crazy Rich Asians, and Avengers Age of Ultron back to back, and the food wasn't bad.

Passport control and customs in Atlanta seemed less chaotic than usual (although they still use the Atlanta system of shouted directions rather than signage).

candy shot glasses We got into Tallahassee too late in the day for the Westminster Oaks van to pick us up, so we just got a cab from the airport. Our swag traveled safely. The four boxes of Lindt chocolate got home unmelted, and the souvenir shot glasses—Viking presented each of us with two of them, etched with the Viking logo—were unbroken.

We ate the chocolate over the next week or so, and WOW was it good. Those champagne truffles were outstanding! The shell was thinner and "crisper" than the soft Lindor truffles I get at Publix. The filling was almost liquid at room temperature and to my surprise I really liked the champagne flavor, just on the edge of tasting alcoholic.

We're already thinking about next year's travel. France again? Viking again? We'll keep you posted.

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