Beam Me Up, Von Scotty May22


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Beam Me Up, Von Scotty

Recently, my new husband and I were coming back from our honeymoon and, by a cruel twist of fate, we happened to be booked on a 23-hour, 3-flight trip from Croatia to New York.
The first of our two layovers was a 10-hour one in Dusseldorf, Germany. Being a fairly frequent budget traveler, I am no stranger to long, restless hours sitting uncomfortably in airport chairs around the world. (N.B. Sofia, Bulgaria has the worst of them; Amsterdam’s airport was one of the best).  My husband, however, wisely suggested we try and get a hotel room in Germany so that we could at least sleep for a few hours before getting on two more flights. Brilliant man.
Not so brilliant was the fact that despite having Wi-Fi for the entirety of our two-week trip, it wasn’t until the airport in Croatia that we realized that maybe we should have booked said hotel.
We managed to get onto the spotty airport Wi-Fi for about one minute, long enough to see that there was a Dusseldorf Sheraton that was – oddly – completely booked. But that there was also another nearby hotel called the Maritim Hotel. And, even better, I actually saw the hotel as we landed.
Perfect. We’d have dinner: traditional German fare at the Dusseldorf airport McDonald’s, of course. Get a room at the hotel. And then roll on out of bed at 5 AM the next day to walk right on over to our terminal for our 6 AM flight (we even already had our boarding passes).
Capital plan.
Except as we’re walking over to the airport, we start to see throngs of people congregating near the front door. I catch a couple of girls in some leather get-ups. But I think, “Hey, I’m in Germany” and shrug it off.
And that’s when we see it. The guy who strolls out of the hotel’s front door in a full Trekkie uniform and Spock ears. Immediately, my husband grabs my arm, glee in his eyes, as he asks me: “Do you know what this is?!”
Yup. We have somehow managed to wander into a huge sci-fi convention in the middle of the Dusseldorf airport hotel. We wander around in a daze as we see Star Trek and Syfy booths, lots of happy geeks and, in all fairness, a lot more leather than I’m used to seeing even at a convention. Turns out German geek chic is metal goes on the Enterprise.
Naturally, there were no rooms to be had at this hotel. Which, considering the fact that I was tired and that we had an epic travel day still ahead of us, might have led me to muttering some curses under my breath. Something like: “Come oooooon, geeks. I mean, you’re my people, but seriously?! The Dusseldorf sci-fi convention is today?!” But with more f-bombs.
We ended up having to grab a cab to another hotel that did have rooms available. Which was annoying as I had just perfectly used up all of my Euros. However, as I was muttering expletives at the hotel ATM, my husband took my arm and said, gently. “I know you’re pissed. But, seriously, can we just take a moment to realize how amazing this is.”
I looked around at the costumes, let myself soak in the excited chatter taking place entirely in German – which of course makes everything sound extra vital — and realized, he was right. It was amazing. Or, more accurately, wunderbar.
And that, ladies and gentleman, is why I married him.

Written by Sarvenaz Tash. whose debut novel, The Mapmaker and the Ghost , can be purchased at your local bookstore or with a few clicks of your mouse here.