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Of ghost terminals and other little things

Actually, it wasn’t quite a whole terminal, just a part of the shiny new T4 at Madrid´s airport, Barajas. It was section M. I had never heard of it, but our flight to Bilbao was leaving from there. It was so lonely that I asked the security guard if I was in the proper place, wondering if they were shooting a horror movie.

But they weren’t, it was just an empty terminal. More than 60 gates, and only two flights scheduled for the whole morning. Little L and I were starving, after an 8 hour (I have to say remarkably uneventful) flight from Chicago, but at first we couldn’t find any open restaurants or cafeterías. That doesn’t happen in Spain. The country is full of them. I was also upset because in the other part of the terminal they have this nice playground for kids, with proper changing tables, bathtubs, ball pools, cribs… That’s where we usually leave from, but if I wanted to go there this time I had to go through security again, twice, and I didn’t even think about it with the baby, the car seat, the stroller…
As I was convinced that I would have a crappy morning, I found a place where we could eat, with a very friendly waitress. Understandable, considering I was the first patron in the morning, and this was 9 am. We had breakfast there, and we spent a good couple of hours with her. We exchanged stories, and laughed about the fact that a brand new, spotless great part of an airport goes totally unused. It’s funny how sometimes you make “circumstantial friends”, people you meet randomly, and with whom you connect and share a tiny portion of your life, which was the case. L had a blast running around the empty space, which, as you can imagine, was huge. And I reconciled myself with the world, after leaving Chicago pretty mad with a couple of the Iberia employees at the airport, only to find, unexpectedly, the friendliest staff at Madrid. For a long time I didn’t like Barajas, and Heathrow was my favorite airport in the world. But that’s quickly changing. At the end, it’s good to be back home.

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