Day 5: 23rd September 2017
Today was an earlier start…..packed my bag according to what I would need in Cairns, Melbourne, Doha and finally, London. Figured I have a few hours to kill in Melbourne and I have to collect my bags and recheck them so I can make any last minute changes there.
Our bus driver insisted I behave if I sit in the front……pfft-yeah right!
I commented on how lovely the resort was and he preceded to tell me there was a resident croc in the water at the 12th hole??!!!!! Stuff losing your balls there….could end up losing more than just your balls!! Ah-ha! I knew it! Those Jurassic Lizards are everywhere!
Thank goodness for digital photos, I think
my photo tally thus far is up to about 400……imagine how many rolls of film I’d have rolling around in my backpack by the time I get home!!!!!
Arrive in Cairns 3 hrs before my flight……what to do? Tried to book a Bungy jump but had to give 24hrs notice…..oh well, the Casino is bound to have air-conditioning-I’ll wait it out there!
On check-in the lady tells me I will next see my bag in London! Eeek!
Quick mental check to try to remember what I was going to reshuffle in Melbourne….well whatever it was it’s not happening.
Wow! I AM DOING THIS!!!! These steps I take right here, right now, toward the boarding gate, are going to end with me stepping out in London! It’s going to be a looonnnnggggg day/night, but this really is happening!
Naturally the poor lady from New York sitting beside me heard about it all the way!
The pilot warned us to expect rough weather ahead but when I saw my New York friend cross herself and reach for her rosary beads I knew we were going to be ok 🙏👍🏼
Landed fine and made my way around the Melbourne terminal to await the continuation of this travel day.
I have been awake now for 14 hours and still have 2.5 hrs wait before I board for my 15hr flight. Only a 1hr stopover in Doha before a 7.5hr flight to London……….so, in roughly 27 hours I will disembark in London ready for whatever the day has in store for myself and my old mate, Ken, who is graciously being my tour guide.
I am the first zone called to board and can hardly contain my excitement as I walk through the plane.
I sit and commence a flurry of last minute messages to my girls……. “I’m on board!!!!! 😊😊😊😊😊😊😊😊 I am SO excited!!!!!!!!! I am like a kid in a lolly shop!!!
Little kid to her pop: This is the first time I’ve been in a plane like this!!
Me to the little girl: ME TOO!!!!
Not sure which of us is the most excited!!!!!!!
I just keep saying thank you to the hostess (as if she built the plane and paid for my ticket!! 🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣)”
I introduce myself to the lady who sits two seats from me and tell her my life in zero seconds flat!
Just when a sleeping tablet seems like a good idea……..enter…… Mr
Europe! 😳 well, hello YOU!!
This is definitely worth another message to the girls!
Introductions uncover that this fine specimen of a gentleman is French! I tell him I am heading for Corsica and he reassures me it is magnificent!!! 😍
Maybe because we are so high that we are close to Heaven, I’m not sure, but whatever the reason, divine intervention enters this story served in a glass of Coke!! Shortly after the seatbelt lights go out, dinner is served. After assisting me with my meal tray, Mr Suave beside me, orders a Coke with his meal.
His tray somehow becomes uneven and his Coke spills into his lap. He is frantically trying to mop this sweet nectar from his groin whilst juggling the remainder of his meal. With doe eyes and the sweetest of smiles I offer, “May I help with that?” He misunderstood what I was offering, thanked me and handed me his tray…….bugger! As he finishes absorbing as much of the soft drink as he can, he takes his tray from me and replaces it onto his meal table. Coincidentally, or again…..a higher intervention, sees the lady in front of Mr Suave recline her seat…….and just when I thought my luck couldn’t get any better….this movement causes his tray to slip again! His jumper is now soaked as well. Again, I fly to the rescue and hold his stuff while he….wait for it….strips off his jumper. The wet drink has made his shirt cling to the fabric of his jumper and inadvertently he peels back all layers covering his six pack. Phew, someone better turn the air conditioning up stat!!! This girl is overheating!! By now he and I are besties! This newfound comfort we have, makes it easier in the night when later I am compelled to offer to share my blanket with him….since his is soaked! …..but that story comes later …. I’m racing ahead of myself, this maiden voyage of mine was not done with twists yet.
I decide to watch ‘I Am Sam’ despite the fact I have seen it heaps of times before. It is half way through this movie that the lady in front of Mr Suave stands and starts gesturing frantically. Even the man beside her is oblivious to what she is trying to say. Something tells me it is panic that has her lost for words so I stand and lean over the seat in front of me to find the passenger slumped and unconscious. I tell the other lady who is now in the aisle to get help and she relays that someone is coming. I wake the man while feeling for a pulse and breathing-she has both and the gentleman helps me lay her into a flat position with her legs elevated. He supports her legs and I, her head. As she regains consciousness he starts asking questions and informs me he is a Doctor. I honestly thought those kind of coincidences only happened in movies!
While she recovered I continued to talk to her and cradle her head so it wasn’t against the hard arm rest. The staff were phenomenal. Calm, efficient and reassuring.
It was a while until I settled back in my seat and realised when I went to attempt sleep, that the lady in front of me, who was still lying across the seats, had my pillow to help protect her head. I ask for another pillow and Mr Suave asks for another blanket as his is dripping wet still. I receive a pillow but they are out of blankets. Mmmm…….I did as any good citizen would and offer to share mine with him!
Grateful and completely oblivious to the twinkle in my eye, we snuggle up under my Qatar blanket. A few hours later I wake with aching hips, dead leg and Mr Suaves head on my shoulder. I decide to suck it up and deal with the pain-life is good. I look out the window smiling like a Cheshire Cat and watch the plane envelope the night. My watch says it would be 8am AEST, yet we continue to chase the night and make the darkness stretch on. Awesome-more time to settle back and snooze……………I love Qatar Airlines-I rate it extremely high already!!!
Luv you 40-leven