So here we are in Connecticut. Ensconsed.
There is snow on the ground and the kids have spent every second since we arrived sledding. I decided to hang inside for a while and talk to you dear internet but you may see me skidding on the ice soon. Yes it rained after the snow and the top layer is hard and slippery.
Thai Airways was surprisingly good. We went Perth-Bangkok-New York. That’s about 6 hours to Bangkok and then 17 to New York. The food was great. My rule for aeroplane food is to always take the Asian option and I wasn’t disappointed. Rogan Josh lamb curry, Hokkein noodles with stir-fry pork, Chicken something or other.
Bangkok Airport is one year old. Some long name starting with ‘S’ my plane spotter son told me. It has the largest single terminal in the world and it is impressive. Walking down the moving sidewalks to the shopping areas feels like a science fiction movie. But already the cracks are starting to show literally in the flooring. It may look new but it lacks soul.
Perhaps I’m expecting too much but even JFK had some interesting artwork on the walls and of course Vancouver Airport is lovely. It’s not often you can say that about an airport! What did Douglas Adams say?
It can hardly be a coincidence that no language on Earth has ever produced the phrase, ‘as pretty as an airport.’ Airports are ugly. Some are very ugly. Some attain a degree of ugliness that can only be the result of a special effort.
The other surprise, given that we bought the cheapest seats we could find, was the amount of leg room. Seriously good. The plane configuration was 2-4-2, and we managed to get window seats so we were “comfortable enough” down the back. We weren’t expecting much so we were happy.
And the 17 hour flight. Recommended. If there’s one thing I can’t stand is hanging around in airports and all that security checking they make you do these days. Sheesh.
Speaking of which, I don’t mind the putting your moisturiser in a plastic bag, the continual scanning of my handbag, the walking through metal detectors, even being patted down by a perfect stranger wearing a gun gives a little frisson to the journey… but what I really find irritating is this ban on water. Even water you’ve bought in an airport on the right side of security… take that to another airport and finished or not – in the bin it goes. The world has gone insane.
Back to the long flight, we had prepared. I asked my GP for some sleeping tablets so that we would definately sleep and they worked. Although Groover did manage to drop half of them. Note to self – next time get the bigger tablets. My sleep was a little fitful as I was terrified I’d needed to and had forgotton to get visas. What’s the worst that could happen – I thought to myself half-way to New York, trying to think positive – we could be turned around and sent right back! Luckily we didn’t need them – I’m sure the travel agent might have mentioned it if we had and after giving immigration our fingerprints and photo they let us through.
Driving to my sister’s house from JFK, Groover and I felt we were in a movie set. The images are so familiar. I half expected to see a high-speed car chase. They never show you the outcome of those chases do they? The mile long traffic jams caused by the wreckage left behind. Yes, we ended up in our first traffic jam.
We started a game of “numberplate bingo”. This is a lot more fun in the States where there are 50 states to get. So far we’ve sighted 13.
Today is a recovery day. We’re all determined to stay awake for as long as possible to try and force ourselves into this time zone. I’m feeling a bit dizzy as I type so I hope to last the distance. My brother and his girlfriend arrive late this afternoon and my sister and Mum and Dad will be here about 10pm. Christmas has begun.