SitRep

Outward Bound: Phase 1 of 4 Attempt No.2

I’m in Heathrow-Bloody-Airport for the next few hours. My flight to Atlanta has been delayed, I’m still pretty jetlagged from what shall henceforth be known as The Weekend Of Two Transatlantics and No Showers, and I fear this blog could become a parking space for my travel frustrations – something I pledged not to do.

Over the past few days, I returned to England, ordered a new passport on Monday from the Irish Embassy in London and got the new one yesterday. In the meantime, I stayed with my most excellent relations: the Beales. Their kindness and generosity was crucial in the retention of my sanity over the past few days. Mainly because they have a bath. Never underestimate a good bath. All I could do was return their kindness with some Belgian chocolates from Harrods- a paltry gift compared to the ass-saving manoeuvres they’ve gone through for me. So that was an unnecessary but not unenjoyable sojourn in Sussex.

The thing is, though, my philosophy has always been “the shit of the present makes for a good story in the future”, thus despair and irritability are unnecessary. Though things have not been ideal, at least I’m not dead or Russian or something. Still, all things considered, though I’m not too happy about this mess, it really could be worse.

These seats could be made of still-bloody baby seal pelt.

The young kid with the aqua pashmina behind me could be snoring louder.

The dishevelled old man opposite who is lying on his back, crotch staring right at me – he could be naked.

I could have dysentery or my drinks could be poisoned with polnium-210 in a tragic case of mistaken identity.

The security guards could tell me to unplug my laptop or pay for the electricity I’m so cunningly stealing from BAA.

Those Croatians a few seats across could be watching terrible Balkan sitcoms at twice the volume and brooding much more Slavically.

My flight could explode in mid-air or I could be forced to watch an intensely unfunny Vince Vaughan movie in-flight. Both fates are equally as hideous.

Immigration could reject my passport again. The US could render me extraordinarily. Customs could forcefully violate me with a baton in search of illicit substances.

All of these things could happen (to a lesser or greater degree of probability – the Vince Vaughan film is thankfully unlikely).

It really could be worse is what I’m saying.

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