It was the final day of the conference followed by the de-rig and it couldn’t have been a worse day for manual work as it was steaming hot. I had been wearing shirt and trousers but after de-rigging the break out rooms I was so sticky I had to change into shorts and t-shirt and steel toecapped boots!)
We pulled down the main room and packed it away. We had some Hungarian hotel staff but they weren’t a lot of help! We’d managed to get it all packed up and pushed round to the lift when it was time to go. But first I had to change my t-shirt again! Before leaving I managed to down a whole 1.5 litre bottle of water to stave off dehydration (although it did mean going to the loo at a lot at the airport!!)
We got a cab to the airport and went to drop our bags – there was a massive queue and in the end the check in queue moved as fast, if not faster, than the bag drop one! We went through security, duty free and the bar before going to the gate. When we got there there was a queue so we retired to the bar for another drink. We finally started to board and shortly after we were all sat down with our seatbelts fastened the pilot announced a 50 minute delay.
We eventually landed at Heathrow at 9.35 instead of 8:40 and when we came to a standstill we were informed that there would be a further delay while we waited for a set of steps to arrive. After we got off the plane we caught a bus to the terminal where there was yet another 20 minute wait to go through passport control. I know it’s been a while since I’ve been abroad BUT the immigration controls have got very draconian in that time. I don’t think I’ve been to another country that puts it’s own citizens through such scrutiny to get back in!
After collecting my bags, cashing in my Hungarian money to pay for the carpark I was eventually back on the road to home – 2 hours later than expected. Then of course there were the inevitable delays on the M25 – It’s good to be back!