Our trip to Copenhagen for Christmas began with our flight being delayed an hour in Istanbul. It was mildly frustrating at the time, especially because I wanted to experience as much of the city as possible before the 3 day holiday began.
We had no idea what lay in store for us.
After a fairly uneventful 3 hour flight, the pilot made the announce met to raise seats to their upright position and so forth and everybody collected their things as we prepared for landing. And we waited.... and waited. After circling for an hour and a half the pilot made the announcement that it was not safe to land and that we would be land in Gothenburg, Sweden- a short 30 minute flight away. A Swedish passenger informed us from there we should be able to catch a train to Copenhagen.
However, Turkish Air had a different plan. The pilot announced that we were going to wait for the weather to get better in Copenhagen. We may be delayed 1 or 2 more hours. So I pulled out a book I've been meaning to finish, put in my ear buds, and tried to make the most of it.
After 2 hours of sitting on the runway, the pilot basically repeated the exact same announcement- we would be able to land in Denmark in 2 hours. At this point a Swedish family asked to get off the plane- their families could drive to the airport and pick them up. The flight attendants relayed the message to the pilot who announced that was impossible because weather conditions could change at any moment and the delay of letting people off the plane could make us miss our window.
Around the 4 hour mark my long dormant claustrophobia begin to kick in as I had a mini-panic attack. People who have seen me when my blood sugar crashes knows that confused, illogical Michael very well. I seriously considered pulling the emergency hatch.
At some point an Irishman with a smartphone relayed the information to the rest of the plane that other flights were landing in Copenhagen- including a plane from Istanbul that left after ours did. Essentially this proved that our pilot had lied to us and was mostly likely incompetent to fly in these conditions. People began secretly conspiring, alliances were formed, and some people got loud.
Finally after 6 hours of sitting on the runway Turkish agreed to let every off the plane, though the pilot was still insistent that the aircraft would be ready later that night. After going through immigration Turkish Air informed us they were hiring a bus to drive us Copenhagen, which was 5 hours away by car. We were so relieved to get out of that claustrophobia/inducing den of lies that a long drive didn't seem like that big of a deal. I even thought it might even be nice to see the moonlit Swedish countryside, which was covered in snow.
As we settled into the bus we felt a certain sense of contentment, admittedly balanced by the contempt we felt for Turkish Airlines. A long, miserable ordeal was finally behind us.
At least that's what we thought.
To be continued....