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Getting there is half the squee

The next morning, Julia and I trudged through the rain, a constant feature on this trip, to the Thameslink station to take the 9:55 to Gatwick. We were hoping to meet Jo there, but she phoned to say she was in a taxi stuck in traffic, and would have to take a later train and pray that she make it to the airport on time. She later texted to let us know she was only two trains behind.

When we got to check-in, Christy was already there clutching a great big Costa coffee, and after a bit of deliberation, decided to check in and go for breakfast, and to see if we could find a secure little bag that Jo could use to put her makeup in as all she had was her shoulder bag -- apparently she hadn't realised that all liquids including mascara were banned from being carried onto planes in passenger hand luggage, and had wanted to meet us at the station so she could put it in our hold luggage.

Christy and I had a hearty 'farmhouse breakfast' that would see us through the day, while Julia went to meet Jo, take her to buy the cute little £6 bag, and check in; after which they came up to join us and had their own brekkie of scrambled egg and beans on toast. The flight to Belfast was fairly uneventful, except for Jules and Jo scaring the life out of the poor man sat hunched up to the window in their row of seats with their incessant squee; and as we came out of Belfast City airport, the sun broke through the clouds. tori_x had come in ahead of us and was waiting for us in Arrivals, but where was Nai? Tori hadn't seen her, and Belfast City airport is tiny...Very soon we learned that she was already on her way to the hotel as she had looked on the monitor and seen that the flight from Gatwick had been delayed...only, it hadn't. Puzzled, we got into a taxi and I gained my first and very favourable glimpse of Belfast, a city I'd never been before and unfortunately on this trip, had no opportunity to explore. We crossed a very beautiful bridge with yellow dolphins on the cast-iron lampposts and railings and passed by a place called St. George's Market which looked like it might be worth a visit, but as I've already stated: no time to explore. We got to the hotel at the same time as Nai was getting out of her taxi across the road from us. Belfast didn't like her, she said, as the ride had set her back £26. "£26?", we shouted, "No -- £12!" Nai's taxi driver turned around affronted, and solved the mystery by yelling "Different airport!" -- she'd only come into Belfast International!

Oh well. We got in, spruced up, and went out to look for the venue and somewhere that had Internet access with a printer attached (the hotel being sadly lacking in that respect), and bumped into Matt on the way out. He was taken aback a bit by the coincidence of us staying at the same hotel (and by the fact that we'd gotten a much better deal on the flight and transport cost and times by opting for Belfast City), but recovered quickly enough and went back about his business. The rain started again while we were out.

We found an Internet connection with the required printer, where Nai arranged for her journey back to Southampton after the Glasgow gig, and found ourselves the perfect watering hole to while away the remaining two hours until we had to go to the gig. It was here that I was introduced to Bombay Sapphire gin for my habitual g&t, and now I will have nothing else. Yes, I know it's a deeply uncool drink that only old ladies are silly enough to ask for, but I am an old lady and I never know what else to order in a pub (except for a lemonade, which I believe is even more uncool).

We went to KFC for our dinner, then went over the road for The Bunker, which strangely enough we had to climb up the stairs to get to.



( 14 Speak Like A Child — Shout To The Top )
Oct. 11th, 2006 11:43 am (UTC)
I <3 Belfast: luckily enough, since I live and work there. Never managed to make time to see St George's Market, though.
Oct. 11th, 2006 01:55 pm (UTC)
One day perhaps, I'll get the chance to get better acquainted with your fair city, but for now, yellow dolphins and the shops along Botanic Avenue are all the name conjures up in my mind. Which I suppose is an improvement on my previous picture...of nothing, really. ;-)
Oct. 11th, 2006 12:19 pm (UTC)
Hee - oh what fun airports are!

I must try that Bombay out on my Dad's wife - she's a gin lady! And it's a pretty bottle ;)

I must also try complaining to flybe for the fact that I paid extra to put luggage in the hold!!
Oct. 11th, 2006 12:40 pm (UTC)
I paid extra too did we not need to?
Oct. 11th, 2006 01:27 pm (UTC)
I don't think we did - since the "all liquids MUST go in the hold" thing - it is now mandatory to have hold luggage not an added "luxury" - I'm going to write and whinge. Not sure if they have changed their website now to remove that fee - but *stamps foot* IT'S NOT FAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAIR!!!
Oct. 11th, 2006 01:58 pm (UTC)
Oh yes. No harm in trying, is there? They might refund you your £2.50.
Oct. 11th, 2006 02:27 pm (UTC)
you being cheeky? I think it is £15 (3 flights @ £5?) worth asking.
Oct. 11th, 2006 03:26 pm (UTC)
Of course, you'd paid times 3, didn't you? Silly me. But I thought it was half-price if you booked it early, £5 if you bought at check-in? Never mind - still worth persuing.
Oct. 11th, 2006 05:54 pm (UTC)
4 of us had prebooked the holdluggage for 2,50 a piece... the other two forgot to prebook but were still charged nothing. Guess the lady at check-in just forgot... So, it's worth a try, I think.

And THAT was the deal with Jo's bag. I thought it looked tiny for regular hold luggage, haha.

(I added you on here too, btw, hope that's okay ;) )
Oct. 11th, 2006 07:27 pm (UTC)
Guess the lady at the check-in just forgot

In which case, they all must have done! ;-) No, it's more than likely that since the restrictions on hand luggage became so tight, they waived the fee entirely for those who, like me, had been planning to travel light.
Oct. 11th, 2006 03:54 pm (UTC)
That breakfast was SO big, Jo's bag was so small and Julia tried to takes knives with her *Bad Julia*!
G&T is a cool drink, it just makes me fall over and Bombay Sapphire comes in such a pretty, pretty bottle (is shallow like that!)

Such fun... and the gig report?!
Oct. 11th, 2006 05:06 pm (UTC)
Don't worry, the gig report will be up when I've had my dinner!
Oct. 11th, 2006 08:18 pm (UTC)
Thanks for sharing the bounce and squeee!
Oct. 11th, 2006 09:01 pm (UTC)
You're welcome!
( 14 Speak Like A Child — Shout To The Top )
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