Joining loads of tourists on the ferry to Manly
Sunday started most pleasantly with a bus ride into the city, then joining the throngs of tourists on the ferry to Manly, which is a butch name for a suburb if ever I heard one. We wandered around, pausing occasionally to take in the tranquillity of the waves washing up on the beach, then went on a merry jaunt up a hill, up some steps, along a narrow road, down some more steps, down a hill, before arriving via a somewhat circuitous route at Manly’s main shopping and restaurant bit, the Corso. The guitarist from Paddington the day before and a bagpipe band were doing battle for the attention of the crowd’s ears, with the bagpipes winning. We found a food court to relax with a bite to eat, before continuing to wander around.
Ice-creams and a snooze on the grass near the ferry terminal seemed like the only sensible way to pass the time, before we met up with Susannah and Adrian who drove us back to North Sydney, taking a route almost (but not quite) as scenic as the ferry ride had been.
We relaxed with cups of tea, before heading to the airport about 6:45, which allowed plenty of time to catch an 8pm flight. And this was where the real fun of the day began….
19:20 Check in
19:30 Go through security and look at shops. Note boarding time for 20:00 flight is showing as 20:10
20:00 Boarding time shown as 20:30
20:15 Susannah and Adrian give up and head towards home to find a supermarket before they all close. Very wise.
20:30 Boarding time shown as 21:00. Airline makes apologies, problems with weather radar
20:45 Settle in the departure lounge, play some Snake and Memory on Iris’s phone and watch a bit of a pretty bad but almost compelling telemovie, before wandering around the shops again.
21:15 Aircraft announced to be unserviceable. Alternative aircraft will be available at 22:00. We are advised to present our boarding passes at Burger King or Velocity for refreshments
21:30 Settle down to hot chocolate and brownie. Stare up at TV, and try to figure out what we missed of the movie, before realising after a couple of minutes that this TV is tuned to a different channel and we’re watching a completely different movie. (Actually not completely different. Both are American and feature male psychopaths with guns.)
21:45 Ring sister to whinge about the whole thing. Happily whinge to her voicemail instead.
21:55 Board aircraft. The serviceable one, that is, which is probably just as well.
22:25 Captain announces tractor to push us out has a flat battery! Hmmm… it takes me back to an incident back in 1995…
22:35 Push out, to applause from passengers
22:40 Take off, trying to ignore odd creaking sounds coming from outside the plane
23:45 Arrive Melbourne in one piece
23:55 Wait for baggage. For ages, the only thing going round is what looks like an engineer’s glove, and a Qantas Priority tag. After they’ve been around a few times I decide to unite them, to chuckles from other passengers.
00:20 Baggage starts flowing, to more applause from passengers, most of whom don’t look too keen to fly Qantas again
00:25 Get bag, queue for taxi. Shortage of taxis, but they’re pretty quick in getting more
00:35 In taxi. Taxi driver hears story and commiserates. He seems confident the taxi won’t break down.
01:05 Home. Zzzzzzzzz…