PRETORIA, South Africa -- A World Cup experience that promises to be riven with logistical challenges and outright organization chaos started appropriately with, well … organizational chaos.
Two words for the 16-hour flight into
And it didn’t help that Delta had some challenges in getting the big bird out of
And with that, the chaos commenced – complicated by Delta’s announcement that all non-South
I must say, our boat load of folk shuffled right along like a good row of rushing ducks. Bags were crammed and jammed with a purposeful haste into overhead space and off we flew – accompanied in the end by a rousing round of applause for crew and passengers.
During the abbreviated gettin’-settled process, a few of us who spent our flight-delay meal vouchers at the bar offered some friendly encouragement to any who dawdled. Ahem. I may have been one of them – along with a few other intrepid journos, honoring intrepid journo tradition by tossing back a couple at every opportunity. ESPN’s Jeff Bradley, the Big Apple Soccer writer Michael Lewis and ESPN.com’s Leander Schaerlaeckens were among the posse pushing around $8 domestics. Airport prices. What a racket.
At least half the passengers aboard Flt. 2010 into Jo-burg were en route to World Cup splendor. The only snag in the loading process was a trash talking Brazilian flight attendant, who wondered aloud to anybody who would listen why we were all going in the first place. “
It was all in good fun. Plus, she was a little hot, and that always counts for a lot in trash talking.
As the plane rolled back, some of the great Mexican fans began the inevitable chants: “Ole … Ole, Ole, Ole … ” So, we beat the chaos for this round, but something tells me that’s a battle that will rage again.
For now, I'm in my little B&B, just down the street from the