Time to go home said Zeberdee, and so did our early 6am alarm.
Those who had their taxi picking them at 4.15am did so very quietly as no one else had heard them leave. Everyone left now were scurrying around grabbing some breakfast, clearing up and emptying the food cupboards. It was a real battle to stop Alex trying to take everything home with him.
Against everyone’s advice he decided he would put the remaining Olive Oil in one of his suitcases. In the other he also placed the left-over Olives after he had tried to strain them in an empty ice cream carton. (When they got home and unpacked, they found that in both cases the Olive Oil had leaked onto the clothes in case.)
As the taxi arrived on time, we locked up for the last time. It was still a tight squeeze even though there were only 6 of us returning now to the airport. We marvelled how we had ever managed 8 of us going the previous way.
There was a long wait at check in. At least it kept moving and after about 20 minutes or so we had all left our bags and wandered to security. We all got through quite quickly apart from Alex who had something in his bag that he shouldn’t have had.
Then we joined another long queue to go through Passport Control. Since Brexit we must have our passports stamped in and out to ensure we don’t exceed the time permitted in the country. Here Alex though had the laugh on us as he has an Irish passport and walked through his queue with no wait.
After a quick look in a couple of shops it was time to go to the gate where we joined another long queue. We greeted on board by some cheery staff and the captain who I had a chat with whilst waiting in the aisle.
The flight passed quickly as I read my kindle. Then as I thought we were circling to land the captain announced that we had been asked to take a holding position due to a glider on the flightpath which was not responding to any calls to get out of the way. Fortunately, after 5 minutes or so they obviously managed to contact the pilot and we were allowed to make our landing. Apparently in gliders contact is maintained by mobile phone.
It was then another very long walk from the gate to passport control. Why is it always such a long way? It felt as though we had landed at Stansted and then had to walk to Luton.
There was a long wait for our luggage as it was 25 minutes before the carousel even started moving. Our bags and golf bags all arrived almost together.
Our taxi driver pulled up as we arrived at the meeting point, and we were soon our way back to Norfolk.
Back at Grahams we said our goodbyes before loading our car and driving the 30 minutes home where we were greeted again by some jungle like lawns. After a quick cuppa Karen went off to visit her Mum and then going to the Fish shop to bring some welcome hot food in for our tea.
For some strange reason it felt to me like I had travelled back from the USA overnight and I was physically exhausted. I struggled to keep awake until 9pm at which point I retired for the night. And with that another happy trip was complete.