After hearing from the rather brusque flight agent that I couldn't board my flight back to the states, I was dazed.
What do you mean I can't get on the plane? It's still here?
But I am a good kid, so I did what he told me and headed towards the information desk. There, I tried to get in line, and was yelled at by another agent for coming to close to the desk before it was my turn (these people were grumpy and had no time for me, evidently!).
Eventually I got up to the counter and told them what flight I was on. The woman took my passport and the slip of paper that I had written the flight information on and tic-tacked away at her keyboard. I talked quietly with a very tall and beautiful woman next to me, whose flight left ten minutes before mine for Rome. (They held her plane for her...)
The woman, looked up and said "I will put you on the same flight tomorrow." I nodded, and smiled politely: You couldn't get me there today? Really? But I wasn't gonna push my luck -- I saw the airport Police on my way in -- they carry machine guns!
I stood awkwardly for a while, since she hadn't given me anything, and then she finally looked up and gave me back my passport.
I headed to the nearest payphone, gave the operator my credit card numbers and soon enough my Dad picked up. It was the middle of the night at home, so he was a little groggy, but I let them know what happened, and that I would find a hotel soon. After we hung up, I took off my scarf and put it into my carry on because I was about to die of heatstroke, and headed to the Charles De Gaulle Information desk.
After a few moments of confusing mistranslation, I had the name of a hotel written down and I headed to the shuttle area to catch a bus for my hotel. So I stood, and waited, in the heat. And waited...
To be continued...