So we left Goa in pretty rough shape unfortunately. Our upset stomachs from the night before hadn’t gotten any better (indeed, in Dina’s case somewhat worse), we were also pretty weary from another early start. We got back to Dina’s place in Khar and got some shut eye, before cleaning up & heading out to finish a number of our Wedding Shopping errands.
First up was a trip to the wedding invite designer. He showed us some examples of how our invites would look and in a somewhat slow fashion, we managed to refine the invites significantly. Then it was off to a number of stores to pick up items we’d ordered previously in the week before I headed off to Chembur to see the tailor and collect my stuff.
On the way down to Chembur and back to Khar, I felt myself get significantly worse, with stomach issues, an headache and some light-headedness. I was crashing and burning. Thankfully I got back to the flat at a reasonable time, but I basically took fever, with a burning-up head and body… Dina & her Mother were relaying cold, damp cloths to me during the evening… this despite Dina not feeling well herself! Star!
Over the night I went from hot to cold to hot again and it’s fair to say I wasn’t in a good place when it was time to get up, however it was time to get back on the plane & head home. Dina still wasn’t feeling great, but we both managed to pack bags & get ourselves ready for the trip.
We delicately reached the airport… I was expecting it to be busy, but when we did so, it was almost deserted… we headed for check in and were nearly done, when I twigged that the predicted boarding time was over an hour & half later than our expected departure time… apparently the flight had been delayed because they needed to “wash the engines”. I really wasn’t sure what to make of that, but it guaranteed a long sit in departures.
Thankfully, by the time we were boarding, I was feeling quite a bit better, however Dina wasn’t. She was really struggling. To cap off her woes on leaving India, her in flight entertainment player wasn’t working. Nearly a ten hour flight, in case you’re wondering. She did manage to sleep lots and finished her book.
On arriving into Heathrow, after dark, and looking out the window of the plane as we taxied (for what seemed such a long time that I thought I was going to get dropped off at my door!) I couldn’t quite work out what I was seeing… I knew it was cold, because when the arrival announcement was made in Hindi, pretty much every Indian on the flight collectively shuddered… but it was actually snowing! And with the British ability to implode with the slightest wiff of weather issues, I knew that this would spell trouble.
Yet the weather wasn’t our first issue… I flew through immigration; a queue of about five in front of me that moved quickly. I was then waiting at the baggage hall for around an hour & half for Dina… her line moved incredibly slowly. And this coupled with our delayed flight, meant that our troubles were about to get worse.
As we headed for the underground, we met folks coming the opposite direction who told us that the Terminal 4 station was closed and that we’d have to head to Hatton Cross. Once we reached here, on the (thankfully free) bus, we were pulling bags through three inches of snow. On getting in to the station, it was apparent that with weather issues and line closures for engineering works, that getting home was going to prove a massive issue and with Dina due to fly out of Heathrow on Sunday for Belfast, it seemed useless and, frankly, a bit terrifying to consider such a 24 hours of travel problems.
So we bailed to the local Jury’s Inn hotel… this time, working through around four inches of snow. In fact, we gave up on the pavement & travelled on the road, such was the difficulty with the baggage. Thankfully the traffic was light and we travelled safely. And through all of this we were both feeling pretty rank – though Dina was, by this stage, much worse than I.
The next morning we got over to Terminal 1 to send Dina on her way back to Belfast. Heathrow was suffering with the weather and as it turned out half of all flights were cancelled!! Thankfully Dina’s was going & left on time!! I then took the journey that we could have tried the previous night. I took the tube to King’s Cross & then the bus back to Brixton… a cool (literally) two & a half hour jaunt across London.
So the first holiday of the year is over and despite the tough end to it, we got through all the stuff we wanted to. The wedding work went well, the rest time was good, the food was great (well, apart from the bit that sent us under) and the people were, as always, fantastic.