For some reason, the advertising slogan, “Getting there is half the fun,” keeps going through my mind. Well, I certainly would not describe my trip to Perth, Australia as “fun”. Five different plane boardings (only once onto the same plane); four times standing in line to get boarding cards; problem with travel visa (I missed putting both of my middle names on the forms); lost luggage; and canine inspection of luggage and confiscation of my apples. (At least I declared that yes, I did have fruit with me . . . but by not throwing it out before the dogs found it, I got to go to the end of an extra line to discuss the issue.)
My original flight from Chicago to Los Angeles was delayed nearly two hours. The plane I switched to had only three of its six lavatories working, and none of the overhead lights in my section working.
II’m sooooo glad that, since I packed too many clothes to fit in my suitcase, I had to pack one outfit in my carry-on bag. I am also grateful to Qantas for providing an amenity bag with lightweight T-shirt and shorts . . . so I have pajamas, too.
All in all, it was a long, grueling trip. On the plus side, I did meet some wonderful people — Andrew and Sumit, who sat on either side of me on the longest flight, were especially kind and helpful and pleasant to sit and chat with. And in Melbourne, where I had the most problems with making it through a zillion line-ups (immigration/lost luggage/special services for ticket problems), countless people offered to let me ahead of them so I would be able to catch the final flight out at 12:15. A big “thank you” to all of them!