July 19, 2004

Back From the English-Speaking Countries

... to a land where they drive on the correct side of the road, even if they don't speak the right language. We made it back late last night -- without our luggage, thanks to Aer Lingus and their very maņana attitude. Our connection from Dublin to London Heathrow was over an hour late, forcing them to recycle the excuse that they'd used on us a week earlier, when our Heathrow-to-Dublin flight was over three hours late: "we apologize, but this airplane was delayed earlier in the day and we've been trying to make it up since then." The flight between Heathrow and Dublin is only seventy-five minutes long, and Dublin is Aer Lingus' home base; couldn't they have just injected another plane into their LHR-DUB rotation and broken this increasing cycle of sorrow? (... or just have planned things more effectively in the first place, since this seems to be a common occurrence?)

Anyway, from my view out the window as we sat parked at Heathrow, waiting for the jetway to be wheeled up and the cattle call outwards to begin, I got a clear view of Aer Lingus' baggage staff at work, and they certainly didn't look like men meeting a late plane, determined to help luggage meet its connections -- more like men who were tapering down at the end of a long day, not wanting to work too hard, and perhaps dreamily looking forward to quitting time, a pint, and a football game in some local bar. It didn't take too much prescience on my part to have a premonition that something bad was going to happen, luggage-wise.

But Shelby reports that British Airways brought about a happy baggage reunion this afternoon -- intact, minus a bottle of hand lotion that was in one of the outside pockets. (Which I assume fell out somehow -- I mean, who steals a partially-used bottle of hand lotion? Wait, I don't want to know...) So now I look forward to going home for a dearly-awaited shave and (ahem) tooth-brushing. A walk with the dog wouldn't be a bad idea, either ... assuming that she's come out of her defensive don't-take-me-back-to-the-Hundehotel position beneath the bed.

Other than weird stuff at its beginning and end, the trip was a really great one; more to come on our adventures.

Posted by Kevin at July 19, 2004 06:40 PM