01.09.2011 - 02.09.2011 16 °C
I left home about 12:45 on Thursday afternoon. Almost two full days later I arrived at my final destination - the village of Borrowston on the Isle of Lewis.
It was a journey of encounters as one of my friends was on the same bus to the airport and we were able to have a quick catch-up. And then in Sydney as I was waiting to board the flight to Dubai when I saw Shelley wander past. She was on the same flight as me, sitting in the row ahead of me but on the other side of the plane. Spookily she was also heading to Glasgow but a day later than me as she was spending a night in Dubai. Even more spookily she was leaving for home on the same route as me but a day earlier.
One of the most interesting parts of the journey for me was flying over the Middle East. We flew pretty much directly over Baghdad and along the path of the Tigris River. There were good views all the way from Dubai to Europe until (predictably) leaving the Netherlands to fly across the North Sea. Then it was cloud until landing in Glasgow.
I had a 4 hour wait in Glasgow but luckily my upgraded ticket to Stornoway included access to the FlyBe VIP lounge. (FlyBe is the name of the airline that operates the domsetic flight to Stornoway). This meant a complimentary beer to celebrate the almost-completion of the long haul halfway round the world & pilfering a bag of chips to eat later.
I couldn't help but nod off for most of the trip to Stornoway. Though clouds are interesting, the land is even more interesting. Especially if it is peat lands and rugged coastline and small villages of breeze block stone houses - the descent and land landing at Stornoway had me attentive despite my sleepiness.
So, here I am. After 30+ hours in airplanes and about 43 hours of total travel time (plus a day's rest), I finally arrived. I look out the window to a sea loch, green rocky hills with a few houses and the ubiquitous UK cloud. But more on that later.