So I finished up my work commitments in Kuala Lumpur and made my way to the airport for my flight to Paris. A flight which was scheduled to depart at 11.30pm last night. A flight which I was really looking forward to taking, because I had plans for the very day I landed.
It’s now 7.30am the next day and I am still at the airport. It was quite a funny night, really.
It started at checkin, as all good airport stories do. I had checked in online to save time. Little did I know at that stage how much time I would have. I was told that the flight would now depart at 2.15am, not 11.30pm as scheduled. I was given a meal voucher and sent off to go through passport control.
I had a nice meal and a few drinks, which killed an hour or so. Then I went for a reflexology massage at the airport massage salon – that killed another hour, which took me to midnight. Only two hours to go. It was great massage, but the whole experience lost some of its gloss when the masseur stood beside a closed door out of the salon and asked for a ‘tip’. While he wasn’t holding the door closed, the gesture was fairly obvious. Niiiiice!
Then I walked around the airport for an hour. Good exercise, especially for someone waiting for a 13 hour flight. I got to see a lot of the airport, found all the free internet computers (one of which I am at right now), checked emails and so forth. Another hour killed.
I strolled towards the boarding gate, thinking I would stretch out on some of the bench seats and listen to my iPod. The bench seats were full…of all my fellow passengers, waiting for their flight.
Finally, at 1.30am we were called into the boarding lounge. There was a mini stampede at this point – everyone seemed to have a bit of cabin fever. Then once the last passenger came into the lounge it was announced that there was a further delay of nearly one hour. So boarding would be at 3am. It was at that point that I nodded off, but I was not fully asleep because I could feel my head bobbing backwards and forwards. I think I got about 10 minutes of real sleep.
Then I was woken by the sound of stomping feet – we were boarding! I joined the herd, got onto the plane and found my seat. Something was not right though…the plane was not going anywhere. And so I sat. And sat. And sat. I might have nodded off again. I thought I had slept through take off, but when I looked out the window I saw tarmac. We had not moved.
For two hours we sat on the plane. By 5am we were told to get off the plane, because something was wrong with it (ya don’t say!!!!!!!) and the captain was ever so sorry about the slight delay (‘slight’ being nearly 6 hours at that point), and it was not likely we would leave until 10.30am. So this meant I had another 5.5 hours to kill. Grrrrreat!!!!
I am still waiting – only 2.5 hours to go, though I am skeptical that we will actually go. I really don’t care now. Something will work itself out. I just want to sleep. I’ve calculated that by the time we leave, assuming the current schedule, it would have been the time I landed in Paris, give or take an hour or so. And by the time we leave I will have been living in this airport for more than 12 hours.
What more can I say?
Update: the plane was rescheduled to leave at 10.30am. In the end it did not go until 11.30 but a mere one hour delay was nothing. I hardly noticed it at all. I arrived in Paris three hours ago, 12 hours after I was originally supposed to arrive. However I am glad to be here, despite only 6 hours sleep in the past 48…if I`m going to be tired anywhere it might as well be in Paris.