By Astrid Gühnemann
The original plan was to fly from Santos Dumont to Porto Alegre on Monday morning and meet with colleagues from LASTRAN at UFRGS (http://www.producao.ufrgs.br/interna.asp?cod_tipo=2) with whom ITS have a longstanding relationship through Alumni and research co-operation. However, my morning flight got cancelled because the incoming plane had mechanical problems and needed to be redirected to the international airport in Rio where the runway is longer. Phew, luckily this didn’t happen on my flight. However, as a consequence all passengers had to be booked on other flights and I only arrived in Porto Alegre in the early afternoon. An accident when another car bumped into the back of our taxi added some extra excitement to the day. The compensation between the guilty car driver and the taxi driver was resolved in an admiringly calm and informal way, which would be unthinkable in my home country, where every little scratch of a car is treated like a major incident. All in all, a day that demonstrated the vulnerabilities of transport systems from a traveller’s perspective.