AN ODE TO… FLIGHT DELAYS
People & Places
Yes, it really has come to this. So bored are you with your own environs; so desperate to travel; so keen to go somewhere – anywhere – further than your own immediate postcode that you are now even nostalgic for the really rubbish things about travelling. Take me to a motorway tailback. Plonk me on an overcrowded platform. Better still, install me at an airport and tell me that my flight is severely delayed. Three hours, you say? I can do that. Bring it on. It really does say something about the paucity of excitement in a person’s life when the prospect of whiling away three hours at an airport seems appealing. And yet, at this stage in the game, it really does. The lavatories are plentiful. Someone cleans them – and it isn’t you. There’s a WH Smith where you can buy a newspaper and limitless packets of salt and vinegar Squares, a crisp variant that is oft in scant supply at your local newsagent, yet is – curiously – always available at airports. And there is food: wonderful, bountiful food that is prepared, cooked and tidied away by someone else’s hands. After 13 weeks of your own turgid cooking, eating at Giraffe/Pret/Caffè Italia feels like haute cuisine. “Are we nearly there yet?” whine the kids. No. Not by a long chalk. But we will be. To quote from a wellcirculated lockdown meme: soon, we will be walking down the aisle and hearing those five special words: “This is your captain speaking”.