Tuesday, April 4, 2017

London 2017: Day 3 and Finale

Day 11, April 2nd, 2017-Day 12, April 3rd, 2017

I toss and turn and wake up feeling like a git for my behavior yesterday.  I piddle around on my computer as I wait on Alex and Aurora to get up. It's an extremely lazy morning, as it should be after the big day we'd put in.  Once we wander into the kitchen for breakfast, I apologize and they graciously shake it off.

I'm leaving in the evening and it's a lovely day out, but we're feeling sluggish, so Alex suggests a movie. We walk along, stopping briefly at a realty shop and peruse the multi-million pound properties. "Oh, I think I'll have this one." "Not me; too small! I need much larger! If it's not 10 million, it's rubbish."

After the movie, we wander about, basking in the sunshine.   London in spring is lovely, but I'm of an age that big-city-life, no matter the beauty, simply can't be done. Alex and Aurora are 24 and the world's their oyster.  Big-city-life is precisely where they should be.  But not for me. Fortunately, I live in one of the most beautiful places in the world. I can be on a sailboat and cavorting about the harbor.  I want to go home. 

But that is later and this is now, and now it's time to head back so I can pack and be on my way.  They escort me on the bus to the train station and then we say our goodbyes and I'm off to Gatwick.  Goodbye, London. Til next time.

Irish customs is as indifferent as before. I stop at the general shop in the airport to pick up another plug adapter because I somehow misplaced the one I got the last time I came through less than two weeks ago.

It's been a long day and I feel like hell. I'm of no mood to catch a cab into town and then try to figure out a hotel at 9:45 on Sunday night. I walk over to the airport hotel, happily fork over the way-too-much they want for the room and collapse on the bed to sleep, blessed sleep.

I wake up, get breakfast in the dining room, pack up, and head out.  I drop my key-card off at the desk and, on my way out the front door, I pat my pocket to make sure I have my passport. I don't.  I remain calm. It must be in the room. That's why I check my pockets, after all. Things happen.

I turn around and grab the key-card I just dropped off at the desk. I head back to the room and search. It's nowhere to be found.  I calmly go to the front desk and ask the woman to check to see where the clerk the night before put my passport, because I must have left it at the desk when I was checking in.  She looks around and says there is no passport.

Now, I panic. I race back to my room and this time, I toss it, like the FBI does in a movie.  There is no passport. It's now two hours until my international flight. I have to get over to the airport.

As I walk over, I make sure I have my wallet. It's got my driver's license and my military ID.  Surely, I can sweet-talk my way over to the US with those. Still, I'm nervous.

Once in the airport, I head to "Information" and ask the man behind the counter that, if I dropped my passport somehow last night, who would it get turned into. I explain that I had to have had it to get in through customs last night.  I think it must have fallen out of my pocket when I bought the adapter.

He makes a phone call to security to see if they have it.  While we wait, I ask him what I do.  He tells me that since I came in last night, a scan of my passport should be on record with the airline so that probably will get me through US customs. Probably. I gulp, nervously.

But, Praise Be!  Security did have my passport.  I make it on the plane.

And then it's a long flight and then a longer layover in NYC because of storms and by the time I land in Charleston, it's 1am when mom picks me up.  

And instead of dropping me off at my boat, she just takes me back to her house, and though it's a guest room, I'm back where I'm supposed to be: home.

Irish folks drink and drive?!?

No comments: