9 Hour Flight and a Layover in London

First thing I do on my way to fine wines and quaint cafes in Tuscany? Buy a Starbucks. There’s nothing quite like a cheap cup-o-Joe when you wake up at 6:15 to get to the airport 3 hours early. Yum. The delicious taste of over roasted beans mixed with too-sweet syrup. 😂I actually drained the venti cup in under 30 minutes, that’s the hurry I was in to get to Rome. Hugged my family, grabbed my essentials (phone, money, and coffee), and kissed my dogs. 

I finally made it to the airport where I check in on my flight to Las Vegas. Yes, you read that right: Vegas. Why did I travel 3.5 hours in the wrong direction? Great question. Something to do with flight points and Dallas Lovefield not having the international flight I needed. So I made it through security and found my aisle seat on the plane (no one sat in the middle seat and I wasn’t squished the whole time!) The flight was very smooth and by the time we landed I had read an entire book!

By the time I figured out where I was supposed to wait for 3 more hours, I had already found another Starbucks (I got a refresher this time) and settled down to sit and read the next book on my agenda. The hours came and went, and once again before I knew it I was in my seat on the plane. This time I had a window seat on the row behind the door…with no one in the middle seat again!! The flight takes off and I do my best to be comfortable, snuggled up in my jacket, trying to finish my second book so I could go to bed. Just as I’m about to wrap it up and say goodnight, the flight attendant appears with possibly the best pasta bake and salad I had ever had! 

Full, warm, and tired, I fell asleep. I woke up to pitch blackness: everyone else in the plane had gotten the memo and gone to bed. The sky was dark and I could barely make out city lights below. Of course, now that I was awake I couldn’t fall back asleep so I obviously think it’s time to watch an entire movie at what is essentially 4 in the morning (I later asked why would I do that to myself) before I managed to doze back off.

I’m jolted awake as we land in London Gatwick Airport. I missed breakfast (oops) including coffee, and am still in a haze as I find my way to the passport check. A few question about where I’m going, why I’m going there, blah, blah, blah, and I have my first stamp in my passport! Honestly the most exciting moment of my life. 

Now officially stamped and welcomed into the city, lo and behold what happens? I got lost. I’m pretty sure the people in the coffee shop were still laughing at me as I passed them for the 5th time. 😂 I finally figure out where I’m headed and have to find a shuttle to get to the north terminal because apparently I had been walking up and down the south terminal on accident for an hour. Made it! Found where I’m supposed to check in! …except I have to wait 2.5 hours before I can. So over I head to the coffee shop (bless) that I passed on my way inside and get in line.

Grab some fruit, picked out a pastry, my mouth opens to utter the word “latte” when I realize all the money I brought was: Euros… I’m in London… I need Pounds… Crap.

Coffeeless and ticketless I walk dejectedly to a bench and sit down. I think of all the bad/weird/pain in the butt things that had happened in the last 24 hours and feel… Happy. 

I mean good god who could be grumpy on their way to Rome?😂😂

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