With that in mind, I made another diary blooper this week. Despite only arriving home from my weekend in Skegness on late Monday afternoon, I had a flight booked to visit my chum Clare in the US on Tuesday morning. It was going to be tighter than a gnat's chuff by any stretch of the imagination. And I couldn't afford to miss my flight like I did last time, because Clare would get really mad with me again and call me a daft moose.
So after arriving home at 4.30pm on Monday, I was like a non-hairy James Bond with a mission; I rapidly emptied my suitcases of all things Skegness, and shoved the contents into my new washing machine. And because my washing machine hadn't been installed properly, I had to lie on it during the spin cycle to stop it from bouncing around the floor. It's quite humiliating really, especially when I have company around.
Once that was done, I had re-pack my suitcases, this time for Florida. The whole time I was packing, Clare insisted on being on a Skype video-call with me, so that she could hear what I was packing and check I didn't miss anything. She is very over-cautious like that and didn't seem to think that my amazing mooing cow-thing was essential.
By midnight, I was done, and I went to bed under strict instructions that I had to set off for Gatwick by no later than 7am the next morning. Crikey, that's virtually the middle of the night.
But you will be glad to know that I did it (even though I nearly perished from shock), and I arrived at London Gatwick Airport at 8.30am in readiness for my flight at 11.15am.
The only hiccup I encountered was during check-in. A important man (I knew he was important because he had a walkie-talkie) asked me where I was flying to in order to direct me to the correct desk.
Aw crap. I stared back at him with the realisation that I had no idea where I was actually flying to; Clare had sorted out all the flights for me and I am useless at remembering names.
"Errr, America?" I replied.
"I need you to be more specific than that ma'am," he said, regarding me incredulously.
Gulp. It looked like all was lost until suddenly I remembered that I knew the flight number from my original flight confirmation email (numbers tend to stick in the head of engineers you see).
"I am on flight VS027," I grinned at him.
"That's Orlando ma'am. You need to check-in right over there," he responded, motioning towards the Virgin Atlantic desk.
Marvellous. I was on my way.
Pic.No.1 This is the queue for boarding the aircraft. I didn't like taking too many pictures inside the terminal because it makes one feel like a terrorist
Pic.No.2 This is the view of the apron at Gatwick Airport taken from my window seat
The flight took 9 bloody hours instead of 8 because there was a tail wind, and I managed to watch 4 films on the in-flight entertainment system which was quite a luxury because I never normally get time to watch films.
We touched down in Orlando at 4pm, and after 45 minutes of trying to get through Immigration, I finally emerged into the Arrivals Hall to be met by a waving and grinning Clare. It was lucky she was there actually because I had lost her contact details, and the battery on my iPhone was dead.
After a short drive we arrived back at Clare's house in time to see the sunset over her swimming pool and the lakes beyond.
Pic.No.4 A Floridian sunset. It was rather nice
More to come later folks...........
So, have you ever had a disastrous journey out of interest? Not that mine was too disastrous ...... this time.