ROME SPRING 2019
Our spring 2019 trip will include a little over two weeks in Rome and a little under two weeks in Israel. Last year when we came back from Italy we flew the Portuguese airline TAP with a stop in Lisbon for 5 days. This year we returned to Rome from Miami by way of Lisbon but with no layover in Portugal. Our Italian friends refer to the budget TAP airline as 'Take Another Plane'.
We did have some excitement on the flight. Before the flight took off we talked to the young couple seated right behind us. They were going on a ten day vacation to Italy with the first two days in Rome. After that they had no idea where they were going. A travel agent had made the arrangements and neither knew the name of any city they were going to or hotel they were staying at.
About three quarters of the way into the flight with everyone sleeping and the lights out we heard the woman behind us screaming at the
husband/boyfriend to start breathing. She began to beat on his chest. We got up and turned around and saw they he was indeed not breathing and his eyes were completely rolled up into his forehead somewhere. She started to scream for a doctor. A steward came by and made an announcement. Two doctors appeared from somewhere on the plane. Turns out the fellow had nothing wrong with him - no prior seizures, no diabetes, no heart problems, etc. The doctor asked for some oxygen which was brought to the man and he eventually started to breathe again after what seemed like several minutes. One doctor was an anesthesiologist and had not obviously taken blood recently. He was trying to get the glucometer from the airplane medical kit that had been brought to him to work and to draw blood for it. He had no idea how to get blood from the guys finger and had a hard time even taking the cover off the needle. After several attempts with several needles he finally got blood on a little strip that went into the meter only to find the meter was not registering correctly. Meanwhile the other doctor had taken the blood pressure cuff out of the kit and was trying to take the blood pressure of the guy. He put in around his arm and pressed the button and the cuff started to tighten and then stopped. He tried this over and over again - at least ten times. The machine was obviously broken. So much for the airplane medical kit.
The fellow eventually started breathing somewhat regularly but could not remember anything that happened. We got off the plane with them and onto the bus to the terminal in Lisbon and then lost track of them. We went to the next gate for the plane to Rome but they never showed up. We have no idea if they decided to go home, to go to a doctor in Lisbon or do something else.
For a while we thought we were going to have to land in the Azores which would have been funny since the Queen's brother was there on vacation.