Saturday, April 14, 2012

On to Bologna, Baby!

17th March 2011

Chris Cheng
After checking in, Kenneth kindly bought us breakfast while we waited for our connecting flight. After some initial confusion we found our gate only to find it packed. A verifiable who's who of publishing was on the plane, including Chris Cheng and his wife Binnie whom we had met at the immigration line at Heathrow. Thanks to Kenneth, they had changed their flight to the same one that we were on. Kenneth had checked us in online and we were seated at the back of the plane. 

I overhead to ladies talking about wanting to change seats. "Oh no, we can't change seats. That's the only way they'll identify us is by which seat we were sitting in if the plane goes down!" Ok, this really calmed my nerves. Sarah Odedina, editor of the Graveyard Book and Harry Potter was seated about two rows in front of us. 

Sarah Odedina
In  First Class was Chris Cheng and Arthur A. Levine, who I was to meet later on the bus to the Terminal at Bologna airport.

Arthur Levine

After a 1:45 minute flight over the Alps we touched down. Chris Cheng introduced Arthur to Kenneth who in turn introduced Arthur to me. What a nice, personable man, I thought. 
The Alps

The taxi line at the airport was horrendous. All the flights seemed to have arrived at once. While inline I chatted to Chris about the state of publishing in Singapore and the struggles that the writers here face. Soon enough it was our turn to hop into a taxi and head to our hotel, Il Convento dei Fiore di Seta.

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