I live in country "A" (in Europe) and, a couple of months ago, I bought a round trip flight ticket to the US, for family reasons (not tourism). A couple of weeks after I bought the ticket, I was invited to a job interview for a postdoctoral position in country "C" (also in Europe) by a university.
This interview was scheduled a few days before my planned travel back from the US to country "A." The tone of the email they sent me was such as to make me think that there was no room for moving the interview by a few days (or even by a few hours...). They just told me the date, hour, and room. In my experience this is unusual: I have been invited to interviews from institutes in other European countries (both tête-à-tête interviews and Skype interviews), and I was always given a few alternative dates from which to choose. Bear in mind that Europe is not a country--and is not the US, there are very many different ways to communicate, which caused my uncertainty in how to interpret their message.
Perhaps, if I would have explained my situation, they would have understood and re-scheduled the interview...or perhaps they wouldn't have bothered, whatever their reason might have been.
So, instead of asking the university to re-scheduling the interview, I have bought a new one way ticket back from the US, so that I could make it on time for the interview. (I am not asking judgement of this action)
I am very interested in this job, and I think I should let them know what I have done to make it to the interview. (I am not asking whether I should let them know it or not. I am asking opinions on how to let them know it to obtain a positive effect; if you believe there are not, please, go to the bottom and read the tags to this question: I repeat, this is not in the US and I am not American.)
What is the most elegant way to let the recruiting committee know--on the day of the interview--the what the applicant (me) has done to make it to the interview? (this is the question)
[I am literally marking as useful all of your answers, however opinions from people from different European countries are very appreciated. The reasons being the different nature of social interactions compared to the anglosaxon world.]
[NOTE: I believe now the question is precise, I would appreciate if you answered the question, and not judge everything else]
[NOTE 2: I have changed some tags in this question, with the hope that future commenters or "answerers" could benefit from it. Remember this thing: what is normal or not in your country might be non-normal or normal in another country. E.G. in the US it would be extra rude for the interviewer to ask the candidate a question about his/her family, however this is not true elsewhere: it was one of the first questions I received in an interview with a french university. Please, before commenting - answering with a pretentious / sarcastic / paternalistic tone, be aware that the world is big--and it is not the US. The question is not flawed. I give you another example of how the world is big, beautiful and rich of differences and how lack of knowledge about the existence of such difference in social interactions might appear clumsy. E.G.2 Say we are in the US and a Texan asks to some people at his BBQ: "What sauce should I put on the cow steak?" and a random guy from India who was walking by answers: "You should not eat cow in first place, it is very inappropriate". It is a legitimate answer to be respected, but it is out of context. I feel like the Texan guy reading some comments and answers.]
[NOTE 3: Given all of the above, let me stress that I appreciate all of your answers, but please try to answer / comment only if you have something appropriate to add. Also please, pretentious, sarcastic, judgmental, paternalistic comments or answers do not add anything useful, if not create tension. Moreover, answers that says somethings along these lines: "I am Australian, but am being living in South Korea, so I know I know the right answer to your question" are basically flawed, and the reason is to be searched in the European context that I am picturing in my question.]
[NOTE 4: A comment made me realize that some details in my question might sound like anti-American, I apologize for that. You have to know that it is not the case. As a matter of fact, I have been several times in the US, and I have relatives from there. The claimed reduced interest for answers from Americans is simply related to the non-American situation I am picturing.]
[NOTE 5: Let me provide other examples of how not-so-straightforward social interactions are, where they are carried out in different countries. I was speaking with a German colleague who worked in Italy for a few years, she studies management and was totally captured by the radically different ways to start a meeting in these two countries. In Germany, it is considered professional to start the meeting exactly on time and jump to the point, because this is considered professional to respect the established and clear rules of the game. In Italy, it is considered professional to start the meeting a few minutes late, with a coffee and talks unrelated to work, because this is thought to decrease tension and develop bonding that will ultimately easy the conversation at the meeting. What surprised me the most, is that later on I have discovered that in Sweden (which is not a Mediterranean country) they do the same as in Italy! Another example, this time from my own experience. I have never read that within the context of an academic interview, Americans ask about sport activities, perhaps this is considered too personal and unrelated to the job; on the other hand, in my last interview, I was asked by a Luxembourgian about my sport activities, my understanding was that he wanted to know whether I am a team player or rather an individualistic person.]
[NOTE 6, WHAT HAPPENED: In the days immediately before the interview I was travelling and found my self in a place with no internet connection, which limited my ability to prepare to the job interview. I travelled back--earlier than established--and passed the interview. For obvious reasons, I did not perform well at the interview, but I have been honest, and I said that I have travelled back to Europe only for that job interview. Guess what? My honesty and dedication have been those characteristics that helped me stand over all the other applicants and I got the job. As I said many times in this post: not everywhere works as one may judge based on information limited to a fraction of the world labour market.]