Hello again, Flight Reporters. This is my second FR with an emergency landing included… Few days before this flight, my sister and I were chatting about my mother's birthday, and the first present that came to my mind was an air ticket… And her older son (that's me :P) was going to travel with her as part of the surprise gift…
I knew she wanted to visit the Russian capital since she is a fan of Russian literature and history. So I decided to buy a ticket from Buenos Aires to Moscow to her. Although there are no non-stop flights between Buenos Aires and Moscow. I wanted more miles with LH and Star Alliance, but I didn't want to be in boring Frankfurt again. Then, I remembered my good memories from a city that you can never get tired of visiting: Paris…Air France was chosen…
That afternoon we arrived at Buenos Aires Ezeiza International Airport, 3 hours prior to departure. Check in, security, and immigration were rather fast despite flights were full because of winter vacation in Argentina. We had a cup of coffee at the American Express Lounge, and walked straight to our gate. Then I saw the B777-200ER -still wearing the old livery- arrived from Montevideo. I couldn't read the registration but I know the -200ERs came to AF fleet from 1998 till 2002.
The cabin interior was in good shape, although the 3-4-3 configuration is quite uncomfortable to me.
Seat pitch is never an issue when you are 1.67m tall…
Blanket, pillow and the classic Air France Magazine. Curiously, on the cover Uruguay, previous destination of this aircraft.
Take off was half hour late because a passenger missed the flight and his luggage had to be unloaded. The PTV is quite small but with decent resolution. I liked the satellite imagery, like this one:
Few minutes later a cold beverage and a snack were served. Then, dinner with 2 options: chicken or pasta.
I chose chicken. It was very good. The salad was tasty and the small dulce de leche dessert was delicious. Unfortunately the cutlery was plastic. Since I like bread, I especially enjoyed the quite big piece of baguette.
After finishing meal service, cabin crew asked everybody to shut window shades. Yes, Marathon, you know ;) I went to one of the rear lavatories. I was washing my hands when I heard through the speaker that a doctor was required… I tried to open the lavatory's door but I couldn't. It was blocked with a man's arm who was lying on the floor. Next to him where two FA with a tank of emergency oxygen and a woman who appeared to be a doctor… I was shocked…A couple of minutes later, one of the crew members let me get out the lavatory and returned to my seat… My mother was worried because she thought I was the ill passenger. You know, mothers… :P When I saw a FA with the doctor walking quickly to the cockpit I realized that we were going to have an emergency landing… We were flying over Amazonia. I noticed on the map that our plane was turning to Brasilia, the capital of Brazil…
I opened my window shade and I saw this (no, it's not an UFO). You can pretend you see the fuel being dumped over Brazilian heads…
More than an hour later we landed in BSB, Juscelino Kubitschek Airport. Most of the passengers applauded when the 777 landed. I didn´t, but it was a quite emotional landing. After all, we had been dumping tonnes of fuel to try to save a passenger's life… Now you can pretend you see a B767-200 from the former Transbrasil, stored at BSB since the airline bankruptcy in 2001. Someday I'll buy a better camera…
You might know Air France is starting a new CDG-BSB-CDG route from March 2014. Well, now you know there was a previous AF BSB-CDG flight in July 2013 ;) We parked next to a Delta's B767-300ER.
10 to 15 minutes later an ambulance arrived. They were walking through the left aisle, wearing strange white suits that reminded me the film Contagion… OK, without helmets… For a while, I thought the Brazilian authorities would put us under quarantine because of a virus… The ill passenger was disembarked through door L4. I did not want to take that picture…
We were seating, confined on the plane for almost 3 hours. The captain announced we needed to get a new route by ATC. Also the tanks were refueled. The delay was so boring…
Finally, we took off from BSB. That's all I could see from Brasilia. A very interesting city I'd like to visit again soon
Of course, we were forced to shut window shades again, Marathon ;) I remember that a couple of hours before landing I opened a shade and a male FA came running from a galley with his tie untied, and told me something like: shut the window… Really rude. I preferred not to reply… On the other hand, there was a nice female FA who was smiling the entire 18 hour- flight… Finally, an hour before landing, breakfast was served. It was quite good.
After more than 18 hours on board we disembarked at CDG… Now I understand why ultra long haul flights aren't popular
Tourist bonus. I went to The Peacock Society Festival at Parc Floral. Very good techno music, friendly French people and cool atmosphere. I forgot my ticket at the hotel and one of the security guys let me enter without it, when I told him I just came from Argentina to be in this festival… :P I especially loved Apollonia. Three of the best French DJs you might know: Dan Ghenancia, Dyed Soundorom and Shonky.
I found this interesting video from the Apollonia set, so we can shake our heads at home after reading this emergency landing FR…
American Express Club Centurion
Buenos Aires - EZE
Paris - CDG
It was my first emergency landing. It was an interesting experience as a passenger. I can't rate the crew above 7 because of that rude FA, but the captain and the rest of the crew really deserve 10 for the emergency landing. I forgot to tell you that we were informed by the crew that the Korean sick passenger recovered in Brasilia. Congratulations Air France!
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