Monday, June 13
Heathrow, Terminal 3, 17:30
For the first time in living memory, I was unable to check in online. My ticket was recognised but nothing happened when I tried to get a boarding pass. I decided to go to the airport an hour early to see what was going on. I was at the airport at 12:15. For the first time I was due to use Terminal 5.
The ticket didn’t work in any of the machines and it took the woman on the desk ten minutes to give me my boarding passes. In order to get as cheap a flight as possible, to fit inside my Pixelache budget, I had booked a flight via Hamburg. For some reason this had caused a problem. The woman cheerfully pointed out that I had 35 minutes to change at Hamburg. “You are going to have to RUN!” she cried.
An hour later, as I walked up and down the shops I noticed that the flight to Hamburg had been delayed by 45 minutes. I went to a service desk and asked what I should do. After some discussion I was rebooked onto the first available direct flight – which was due to leave at 18:40. My arrival time had suddenly slipped from 22:00 to 23:30.
I have just been escorted by a security person from Terminal 5 to Terminal 3, and gone through security for a second time. I am sitting bored, looking through my photographs. I notice this one which I took on the bus journey to Trakai. It is more interesting than any photograph I could possibly take in Terminal 3.
I will sit here for several hours. My 18:40 flight will be delayed until 19:15, and then sit on the runway for another thirty minutes. I will get home to Helsinki at about 12:25. Thunderstorms over central Europe are apparently the root cause of all of this.
Life seemed so much simpler in Vilnius!