I am currently sitting in our apartment in Sydney and enjoying the beautiful views and some well needed alone time. The rest of the family have caved to the jet lag and gone to sleep (although it is only 17.00 at the moment), yet I am still some how not tired (I did have a cheaky nap or two when we were waiting in reception). Never have I ever experienced such a painfully long and tiring journey before (and I do consider myself fairly well travelled with planes). The journey started technically two days ago (if you consider the time difference), on the 30th of June, and hasn’t ended until today on the 2nd of July. WEIRD. We set off early that morning towards Flesland Airport and flew to London Heathrow, arriving at 13.20 in the morning. Our connecting flight onwards towards Sydney however wasn’t before 21.30 (8 hours waiting time). We prepared ourselves for a looong wait! The original plan was actually to try checking in and sitting in the departure area, as there usually are more shops, cafés and stuff to do! However we were so early we couldn’t actually check in for a couple of hours. We ended up finding this incredibly cute pub, that served great us a great lunch, had sockets for charging stuff, and a TV showing the Tennis at Wimbledon. We managed to kill hours there!
Then finally we could check in! Here I had my first panic attack. There was a problem with my visa. It was an honest mistake, but you never know how the immigration control will react. I stood there with a lump in my throat having to seriously hold back the tears of panic, and was just thinking “this is literally it, you made it to Heathrow you dumwit.. This is SO you.. How embarrassing, especially since you have been building this up for so long!”. The lovely check in lady sorted it all out for me though, and we could all sigh a sigh of relief! Through to the departure lounge we pottered around the camera stores and drooled at all the beautiful equipment you could buy (my entire family are quite into their photography/filmography, and is a nice passion we all share!). By the evening we were all feeling a bit gross from wearing the same clothes all day, and having already sweated them up from dragging our luggage around all day. My dad decided to take me behind the main scenes of the departure lounge to a proper lounge that had a spa, showers, TV rooms etc., and paid for a well needed shower! Felt very strange showering in an airport, but definitely a delightful experince! They gave us cosy, soft, warm towels, shower gel, shampoo etc., and the facilities were very fancy and elegant. Feeling refreshed we then shortly afterwards boardered onto the massive Quantas airplane for the first 7 hour stint towards the stop over point in Dubai.
The journey in itself was like any long hawl flight: horrid. I sat in the middle of two strangers, and wasn’t feeling the warmth of the company too much. The food however was great! Truly impressed with the menu and the quality of the stuff! Usually air-food is a bit off, but Qantas really nailed it! Later on the switched the lights off and I attempted to get some sleep. Got about 2 hours and then we landed in Dubai, which was 7 am in the morning there. Merely a stopover for fuel and a ending destination for some, they still made us all come off the plane and go through double security checks. Despite how lovely the airport was, I just wanted to cry. I was so tired, and my stomach wasn’t feeling great. Another reason to cry was that the worst was still to come. Dubai airport was nice though and all the suvenirs and languages around you were so exotic! I think it is definitely a destination to consider for my return flight (If I have any money), I could have a couple of days in Dubai to do some sightseeing but more importantly break up the journey home.
Deflated we were put back onto the plane for the gruelling 14 hour long journey to the final destination, Sydney! The meal times and lights off times got weirder and weirder, until my body eventually gave up trying and accepted that time isn’t a thing anymore. My body was so confused, didn’t know when to sleep, eat, toilet or anything. You just sorta had to force yourself to do it when it felt right! By this time as well the bodily odours around my fellow passengers were getting stronger, and although Sidney was getting closer and closer, it had never seemed so far away. Again, the tears were having to be held back a lot. After watching four episodes of Jamie Oliver’s Comfort food programme, Two episodes of Great Railway Journeys in Europe where one took us from Oslo to Bergen, and the other from Vienna to somewhere on the coast (You can guess which one I got excited about first! Nothing like a little home nostalgia, right before leaving it for an entire year), two episodes of Real Housewives of Beverly Hills and another two episodes of Keeping up with the Kardashians, an attempt at sleep, and some food later, suddenly Sydney was really close on the map and they started getting us to fill out additional forms for boarder control. After we landed at 5.30 we got through the boarder fine (thank God), despite my worries about my Visa being an issue, and with bags in hand we sat down for a coffee in the entrance to the airport and we all filled with joy cause “We did it!!”. We started getting very excited about touring Sydney, as we had by then picked up quite a few brochures!
Or so we thought. Next we took the taxi to our accommodation, but then met with the bitter reminder that we couldn’t check in before 2 pm, and that we had another 6 hours wait. They suggested we use the pool for a bit to waste time, and a great idea it was! A good cleanse, and a nice way of waking up your muscles again after being cramped and stiff from the flights. We then went for some lunch in Sydney, walked around a tiny bit around our neighbourhood before trawling back to reception and waiting it out. Sydney was btw COLD. Everyone was walking around in thick coats, scarfs and hats. When we landed it was only 6 degrees! What!! I know it’s winter, but common!
Finally we got the apartment and WOW… 45th floor! What a view. Amazing bedrooms, with ensuite bathrooms with bubblebaths.. YES. I will stay here forever please.