Thursday, June 9, 2011

Adventure 1: London Heathrow Airport

Here's Mom and I before I left for the airport. She always closes her eyes, silly momma.

I arrived in London this morning at approximately 6:52am (London time) and my departure to Cape Town isn't until 9pm. I was supposed to meet up with Alice who was my co-counselor when I worked at Camp Horizons in 2009. The London transit would have taken her 2 hours to get to Heathrow and she had to be somewhere at 6pm so it just didn't end up working. Also, I decided not to activate my Blackberry over here because Verizon has ridiculous international prices. So, I didn't have any way to get in contact with Alice.
I then proceeded to look for a hotel in the airport just to see how much it would cost to nap the day away in a room rather than on an airport bench where I'd have to strap myself to my luggage. I had to go through Immigration to get to the hotel through terminal 5. It was going to cost 175 pounds sterling which would be nearly 300 dollars. Obviously I rejected that offer. So I took the London transit back to terminal 1, going through security again, and slept on the airport bench for an hour. Once I finally figured out that I wouldn't be meeting up with Alice, I decided to venture out again in search of a different hotel. I finally found the Hilton and it was much cheaper so I decided to take it.  I slept for 5 hours straight, took a shower, and headed back to the airport. Of course after waiting in line for security for 30 minutes, my boarding pass wouldn't scan because it had been scanned earlier that day and I had to get out of line, go get a new boarding pass, get back in line, and continue to wait all over again. Now I'm sitting in terminal one waiting for them to announce the gate for my departure to Cape Town. I decided to eat Cadbury's for dinner because they are by far the best chocolates on earth and after 14 hours of venturing around this place, I feel like I deserve it.
Hopefully when I get to my gate, I'll meet up with someone on my trip, that would be ideal. I'm not a huge fan of traveling alone and I'm eager to meet everyone! My flight is 13 hours so I should get in around 10am (Cape Town time) so that would be 5am at home. I'm just 5 hours ahead!
I just wanted to say thanks to my family, shoutouts to Steph, David, Mom, and Dad for keeping my head on straight. Special thanks goes to Steph for writing me the sweetest, most sisterly letter for me to read on the plane. Not to mention she brought me Starbucks and my nap bear before I left for Dulles.
Also want to say thanks to my lucky fam and the rest of my SK sisters, Becca, Lauren, Lauren, Talene, Courtney, Kate, Shelby, Brittany - you all are so wonderful. Thanks for wishing me safe travels and keeping me in your prayers.
And of course Matt for letting me know how hard traveling alone is but that everything works out.
They just announced my gate so I'm off!

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