Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Welcome to London, the time is 6:10am

The last 2 days of my life have pretty much flown by. Literally. I have spent around 30 something hours in transit until arriving in London this morning. In Springwood I got up at about 6am in order to get ready before leaving and we left home at about 8. Everything felt surreal – definitely didn’t feel like I was leaving the country for a couple of years. I had managed to pack everything that I was taking up by about 8pm on Saturday night. In Sydney we dropped by Phillipa’s cafe for a yummy breakfast before getting over to the airport at 10. My flight left at 11 but as it was a domestic flight to Melbourne, I didn’t have to be there all that early.

When getting on the plane in Sydney the Qantas people didn’t want to let me take on my guitar because they had been given “strict orders no guitars” but the lady out the front let me anyway which was good! After that I didn’t have any more guitar issues and got it safely here to England. It’s getting around this guitar!

I had a 2hr layover in Melbourne, but by the time I had gone through customs and got my new boarding passes (every leg of my journey was with a different airline) there was really only about an hour. I grabbed a sandwich for lunch and called all my grandparents for a chat and then left melbourne and australia at 2.30pm heading for Bangkok on Jetstar. The plane was quite empty which was awesome because I was placed in the aisle seat on a middle row and had the entire row to myself so I could spread out on the 4 seats which was good! This was a 9hr flight which I spent watching movies. To help myself get over jetlag for when I arrived in England I didn’t let myself sleep until my flight from bangkok to try and get into the right timezone.

I got a bit lost in Bangkok airport. Because I have flown in and out of Bangkok airport before I thought it would be easy. Then as I arrived I realised that this time I was flying through the international airport rather than the domestic, so it was completely different!! There were a few things that made me smile though – the walking platform things like escalators that don’t go up and stay flat, at the end of them have these beepings and warnings that remind you that the end is coming.

I went through the security check to get to the transit lounge and got the full-degree security check. I had to take my belt off and got fully patted down front and back!! That’s never happened before to me! Then I got onto the next level, wandered around a bit and realised that I actually needed to get my boarding pass first, so went back down, got the boarding pass and had to go through the security check all again! It was 8.30pm in Bangkok when I arrived so after I had my pass I went and got some dinner as I hadn’t eaten on the plane. I had a green curry. The plane left Bangkok at almost 1am- this time with British Airways. I was starting to get pretty tired by this stage as I had been awake for almost 24 hours with about 5 hours sleep the night before. I made myself stay awake a bit longer though, watched another movie and had some dinner on the plane. Again I was lucky the seat department with a window seat just behind the wing. There was a girl on the aisle seat with an empty seat between but she ended up moving across to the middle aisle seat so she could spread out as the seat she was on was broken. Which meant that I had 3 seats to spread out on. When I did go to sleep I think I managed to get a solid 6 hours and woke up with about 2 hours left to go on the plane. Watched another movie, had breakfast and we flew into London at 6:10am. By 6:30 I was through passport control (thanks Dad for the british passport!!), by 6:40 I had all my bags (I have too much stuff, but I guess it means I dont need to buy anything here for a while) and by about 7:10 I had managed to walk the however many km it was to the underground station, buy an oyster card and figure out how to use it, and catch the first train towards where I was staying.

The train was quite empty when I got on and quickly filled up. I was watching all the people and wondering why they were all so dressed up and businessy or in school uniforms. Then I realised that it was about 7:40am and they were on their way to work/school. Duh! I didn’t realy have any issues with finding my way around or getting to the hostel

It is now 2:40pm and I’m starting to get very very sleepy... I’m at a cafe just up the road from my hostel where I’ve been waiting for the last hour untill now to check in. In the meantime since dropping off my things this morning at the hostel I have been wandering around on foot exploring London. So far I have:
• Seen Big Ben and the London Eye (but I didn’t go up)
• Fed a squirrel
• See the changing of the guard at Buckingham Palace
• Walked along picadilly lane, pall mall and trafalgar square ( I didn’t realise that all the places on monopoly were real....)

There are probably more things that I have done but I’m too tired to think of them right now! London today is absolutely beautiful. The sun is shining, it has been quite hot actually. The plan now is to go check in, have a shower and then go and find a mobile phone and try open a bank account.

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