So I was supposed to fly out of Basra on Skylink on Sept. 2 so I could catch my flight to the states from Kuwait on Sept. 4. Keep in mind, flights out of Iraq go to Dubai and Amman on Mondays and Wednesdays, and they used to go to Kuwait on Monday, Wedsnesday and Friday and pretty much only one flight per day. So on Monday, there is one flight to Amman and one flight to Dubai. Also Jupiter airlines flies to Dubai on Thursdays, so there are not a lot of options. However, starting on August 7, the ICAA, International Civil Aviation Association Representatives in Iraq grounded Skylink. Why? Well I guess this happens every six months or so, that the ICAA guys want bribes and each time they want a bigger bribe, so finally Skylink put it’s foot down. They were in limbo until yesterday when the office in Baghdad announced that all flights were cancelled indefinately. Well since Skylink is the only airline offering flights to Kuwait, that posed a problem for me.
So, I was going to travel by car over the border and then I found out that in order to get out of Iraq I had to be a resident or have been in the country less than 10 days. So then I started looking at military flights, there is military flight on Tuesdays and I decided fine I would do that, but then my colleague brought up the fact of how do you get through passport control, you can but your not a priority so it can take 24 hours to get into the country. And they make you wait in a tent. So after running around yesterday afternoon and figuring all this out, I’m now rebooking my ticket through Amman. I was originally going to fly through Amman, but I couldn’t get the extra days approved in Amman. Craziness.
So after all the stress of trying to figure out how to get out of Basra, this morning I got locked out of my hutch. Maybe Iraq is trying to tell me something.