Thursday, October 27, 2005

Terra Australis

The fact that I'm writing this means that I made it across the pond on the plane and am safely housed near a phone line in Ma and Pa's house. I'm bloody knackered too, as I got about 8 hrs sleep in two days. I finished cleaning my place (and it was very clean, apart from the odd mark on the wall...) at 1am on Monday night, went to sleep about 1:30, got up at 4:30 to make the 5:15 train. I was seriously considering having the Duvel I'd left in the cupboard for breakfast...but I didn't.

I didn't get charged for excess baggage!! So I stocked up on duty free - some Hoegaarden with the right glasses and lots of chocolate. I was peckish but I didn't do the "Yak Goes Home" trick and eat all of the chocolate on the plane. Sorely tempted.

I misread the intinerary so I thought we were cutting it a bit fine getting into Vienna at 9:30 when my connecting flight to Kuala Lumpur left at 9:25. Fortunately, I was wrong. It was 10:55. I was also wrong about the arrival time in Sydney, because I thought it was 20:10 when in fact it was 15:10. The total flight time was 20:10. I think I needed more sleep.

I got on the plane at Vienna and I was Out of Order because I had a low row number but I hadn't been called. So I was sitting down in my comfy chair when I overheard a couple commenting on how "ignorant" all these people were who shouldn't have been in these rows yet. I resented that. I wasn't being ignorant, I knew damn well what I was doing. I wanted to get into my seat to stash all the duty free in the overhead lockers!!!

Things took a turn for the worse when a man of Middle Eastern descent was ushered into the seat across the aisle next to me by a very large and very menacing Austrian cop with a gun. The man looked very upset, and I would be too if I had a thug of a policeman coming back every five minutes to give me the evil eye. I don't know what he had done, but he was pretty quiet on the way to Kuala Lumpur and he didn't hijack us. I think the Austrian cop with the gun was far more dangerous.

I watched all the movies (Kingdom of Heaven, Garfield, Monster-in-Law, Hitchhiker's Guide, Herbie Fully Loaded, The Longest Yard) and chatted to the Swedish bloke next to me for a bit. He was going to Oz for a six month holiday which sounded pretty good to me.

I stepped off the plane into glorious 31 degree temperatures and real sun. It was good to be back. Alas, Ma has whooping cough and is very poorly. It's not a disease you want to get. She's better than she was last week though.

Eyes closing.

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