Day 10: Westbound and Down
We decided to throw caution to the wind and hope that Londoners were taking the advice to stay home. We hopped on the tube to Heathrow and managed to find seats with our luggage out of the way. 50 minutes later, we’re dropping off the Mifi and checking in at the US Airways desk. Check-in was easy and security was pretty swift. We ended up with about 90 minutes to kill doing some shopping and breakfast. They finally publish our gate, which of course, is a huge walk from our current location only to be told we’ve got a 30 minute mechanical delay. They fix the plane within those 30 minutes and we’re off to board. Once again, the US Airways credit card came in handy with Zone 2 boarding (we were able to check in at the First Class check desk earlier) and we’re in our seats and ready for take off. I had a guy ask if I wouldn’t mind switching for his aisle seat way in the back so he could sit with his girlfriend. For once, I didn’t have to feel guilty saying no as I was sitting with my family. He was cool about it and managed to switch with a guy on the other side for a middle seat next to his lady friend. He even apologized when he woke me up during the flight as he was trying to do the old ‘yawn and stretch’ with his girlfriend- and ended up hitting me in the head. Smooth, huh?
We push off and we’re on our way. It’s a long flight, but manageable. The only thing is that with US Airways- you get what you pay for. Afternoon snack service is a bag of mini-pretzels and a drink. Anything else (or heaven forbid, a glass of wine)? Credit card, please. Sorry, but with international travel, booze and snacks should be included with the cost. Definitely weak, US Airways. The flight crew was good, as they were able to get the meal service served and cleaned up before we hit a patch of rough air. Good planning by the pilot and crew!
And now for the longest line of the ENTIRE trip. That’s right, welcome home to the United States of America. It was a 30 minute+ queue to get through passport control and then an additional wait for the baggage. At least all our bags came out and the shuttle to the parking lot was prompt. After that, it was a quick stop in Wayne to pick up Charlie. He was definitely happy to see us- and we him!
It felt good to be home. For me, I got less than 24 hours in my own house before heading back to the airport. The next night, I was on a plane to Melbourne, Australia. But that’s a whole ‘nother story.