Leaving Spain, Second Attempt

Leaving Spain, Second Attempt

Can ya pick the movie? Can ya? Can ya?

In the morning I headed down to the hotel lobby and checked out for the second time in the past two days (see Leaving Spain, First Attempt ). I had spent the previous afternoon booking flights I hoped I could board, and hotels I hoped I could reach. I was tempted to joke to the bloke on the desk that I would see him later in the day, but decided not to jinx myself. With a unpleasant sense of deja-vu I walked to the station and caught the train to Malaga airport.

Just like the day before, the departures hall was nearly empty, and I was one of the first in the queue at the Air France check-in desk. I figured that if bad news was coming I might as well get it early. When I reached the front of the line the lady asked ‘where are you going?’ as I passed over my documents. ‘Egypt’ I replied. She gave me a quizzical look. My heart sank. She studied my docs and punched a few keys, then handed me a boarding pass. I was through step one.

Malaga Airport, leaving Spain
Just me and the cleaners

There was a big detachment of security officers at the screening point, and they were taking their work seriously. The line crawled at glacial pace, but I made it through without drama. Step two.

After a bit of a wait, boarding began for the first leg of my journey: Malaga to Paris. I shuffled along in the queue clutching my PCR test result printout, boarding pass and passport. I handed the attendant my boarding pass, which she promptly scanned. Instead of the pleasant, welcoming beep that everyone else heard when their pass was scanned, I got a deep, ‘game-over’- like tone. My heart sank again.

The attendant motioned for me to follow her to a computer terminal. I did so, wondering if I was going to be cut down within sight of the finish line. The lady scanned my pass again, typed something into the computer, returned the pass to me and wished me a pleasant flight. Thank fuck for that. I was through step three.

At that point I knew two things for sure: I was leaving Spain, and I would get at least as far as Paris.

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