Subject: Re: Despite meticulous planning...
Hi Linda and Ziners,

We were on our second European vacation in 2000 and had planned two fabulous weeks in England. After landing in London, we would take the train to Bath and pick up a car there, the better to see the Cotswolds and South Wales before heading further north.

As we came through passport control and on through the airport I saw hand-lettered signs everywhere. "No petrol!" they said. "Do not drive unless you have petrol!". I stopped at an information desk and questioned the man there, who was wearing a turban.

"Didn't you read the papers before you came?" he asked us in precise Indian accents. "There is a petrol strike in this country. You should have read the papers." He seemed to think that we could - snd should - have simply postponed our trip due to their petrol strike.

Of course there WAS a petrol strike. The freeways were empty. The buses (who had fuel, somehow) and trains were jammed with people. And our itinerary was useless. We created a new one the next morning, with a lot more train travel in it, and enjoyed two fabulous weeks in England!

--Dave & Karen Votaw, in beautiful Salem, Oregon