London Day Zero

Anyone that has traveled with me before knows that I always get ‘randomly‘ selected at airport security for further testing. Maybe it is my bags under my eyes that makes people suspicious, I don’t know. However, when I have traveled to Melbourne with T-Rex, I somehow managed to escape scrutiny. I thought she was my lucky charm, but unfortunately the luck did not continue when we embarked on our London voyage, with both of us being selected for a swab analysis. 

Besides this small inconvenience, getting on the plane was rather straightforward and uneventful. Brisbane International has had some upgrades, and now has a wizard chess board. Once we got on the plane, the first thing we did was change out of our uncomfortable clothes and into, specifically purchased for this occasion, comfy, baggy and warm clothes. The plan was to change back into normal, publicly accepted, clothes before landing in Abu Dhabi. The only problem with our plan is that T-Rex and I didn’t account for how freeing and natural it felt wearing them.

Tired and exhausted, we disembarked   from our 14 hour flight, with minimal amounts of interrupted sleep, but otherwise as simple and quiet flight as you can hope for. Wearing our ‘flight pj’s’, we boarded a shuttle bus from the tarmac, to the main terminal. As always, the vast in-your-face difference of a foreign culture, takes a while to adjust. Unfortunately for us, we only had one and a half hours to navigate our way through the airport, through security and find our departure gate.

We had hoped that we had experienced all the security bad luck that we were going to get, but fate had one more experience in store for us. Having smuggled some orange juice and water from the plane, keeping it as a contingency for the next leg of our journey (as we were constantly parched throughout), T-Rex and I started to panic about the 100ml limit. They also had a very different system there, for instance your electronic equipment could be left in your bag. Having nowhere to dispose of our contraband, we had no choice but to try our luck and see if we can get it past security.

Surprisingly, the liquids weren’t an issue, for some reason metal was detected on T-Rex (must have a metal lining in those PJs) and was forced to go again through the security scanners.  I was worried as there are several ‘female inspection booths’ littered around the area, I was concerned that she might have to endure a first hand experience of one as her first taste of foreign culture. Luckily, like 99% of most things, there was nothing to worry about. 

Boarding our second flight, we were served our third on-flight main meal. This meal proved to me that Gen Ys managed to miss the era of terrible airline food, that I remember being explained so clearly in a Jerry Seinfeld standup routine in the 90’s. The food that we have managed to experience, not just on today’s flight but always, has consistently ranged from average to good. It’s certainly no Nutella crepe of awesome level, but nothing to make fun of.

We had used up our luck in the first flight, T-Rex’s screen froze about 15 minutes into watching Mr. Robot (promising show so far) and after kindly explaining the situation to a flight attendant, got a tense to non-existent response. A while later, after the meal service, we decide to ask again to a different person, this time we got a much more helpful explanation of what they were going to try to rectify the situation. Unfortunately it didn’t work, and as an IT professional I knew the technical term for this problem, it was fucked.  However they did kindly offer to relocate us to different seats on the plane, but we became quite attached to 53.JH (A.K.A we couldn’t be arsed moving all our gear).

The worst thing about the flight however, was not the screaming baby, but the cesspool of sniffling and coughing. Petrified of getting sick, we prayed to the gods to spare us, but only time will tell…

About the Author


Mannan is a software engineering enthusiast and has been madly coding since 2002. When he isn't coding he loves to travel, so you will find both of these topics on this blog.

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