AHI Travel had arranged my flights from Phoenix to Prague. I had been waitlisted as a solo traveler on the Grande Danube Passage trip and a spot opened about six weeks before departure. It was easier to let the AHI Travel staff book my flights and arrange a transport from the Prague Airport to the Art Deco Imperial Hotel.
My flight was on Lufthansa. I was scheduled for United from Phoenix to Houston, Lufthansa for the Houston to Frankfurt and Frankfurt to Prague legs. I had a Lufthansa frequent flyer membership, so I updated the travel information with the new flights to get credit for each leg.
Packed and ready to go, I checked the locks on the house, turned off the water heater and air conditioner and walked to the street. I normally put in my neighbor’s address so that I’m not leaving a known empty home. I realized when I opened the UBER app on my phone that I had not updated my credit card information. Argh! I needed to step back in to the porch light, pull my credit card out of my wallet and update my account information. I returned to my street corner and set up a request for a ride to the airport.
My driver “Gabor” arrived within a few minutes driving a very clean Nissan Cube. I got in to the back seat with my small amount of luggage. As Gabor spoke, I detected an Eastern European accent. Maybe I was just hopeful.
“Where is your accent from?” I asked.
“Hungary.” was his reply. This is my ideal time to practice my newly acquired Hungarian language skills.
“I don’t speak Hungarian.” I said in Hungarian. “It’s a nice morning. Yes, sir. Thank you.” Okay, it didn’t make a lot of sense but that was all that I could think of.
“Oh, so you are learning. That is very good. But don’t worry, many people speak English.” he kindly replied.
What? Was that a slam? I thought that his comment was very funny. ..and likely very close to the truth.
And so my adventure began with my $10.67 UBER ride to the airport and the ego-boosting conversation with Gabor from Budapest.