Friday, December 9, 2011

Goodbye, Italy. Goodbye, iPhone.

Here’s my problem: when a plane I’m traveling on lands, I’m ready to get off RIGHT THIS VERY SECOND.

My wife Anita said that on our next trip, I have to sit perfectly still until everyone else has left the plane, then slowly and casually get up from my seat, check that I have everything I started with and make certain I have the right bag.

Had we been following that protocol, I wouldn’t have jumped up out of my seat and had my iPhone fall out of my lap without me noticing it.

We were in Paris, and were on a long shuttle between gates when I realized that it was missing. Grrrrr…

I found an Air France representative who – miracle of miracles – was friendly and spoke some English. She made some calls and managed to get someone to board the plane and look under my seat, where they found my phone. My lucky day, right?

Nope, because she can’t get anyone to bring it over, even though I’m offering all of my remaining euros to anyone who’ll exhibit the tiniest amount of customer service.

The lady at the Air France desk is confident that my phone will be returned to me in short order and gives me an email address to write to in order to arrange delivery of the phone, which is going over to Bag Services. I make her repeat the email address three times, and then look over it to see if it’s correct.

I realize this isn’t going to end well when I send an email an hour or so later, while sitting on my flight back home, and get a bounce-back message telling me that it’s an invalid email address.

I spent the next two weeks explaining, begging, screaming, arguing and berating Air France employees. The bad news: my phone mysteriously disappeared again.

The good news: I learned to say “You suck!” in French (“Vous sucez!”).


  1. When I drop stuff like that,
    I don't have enough faith in the Universe
    to even HOPE that it will be returned.
    And people in France are usually soooo friendly!

  2. Maybe it's just a ploy to get a new iphone 4 with Siri.

  3. The US has its problems, but we are the land of customer service.

  4. Way to go Mr. Bilingual!

    So sorry about the phone!

  5. I lost mine too recently - the night before my wedding actually - in a taxi. My fault because I was bit cranky and anxious about something! I feel your pain because I got no help from the taxi company!

  6. Oh my gosh that's so horrible!!! I'm so paranoid of losing my phone (which ironically, I've done more than once. Oops.)

  7. Ah! I remember this! We emailed right about this time! Man. Doesn't apple have some kind of app for reclaiming lost phones?

  8. I think it's admirable that you use every opportunity to learn a new language.



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