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Welcome to Day 10 of Janet and Randy's London Trip 2015

Friday, September 4, 2015

Our last morning in London.  Took our time getting up and getting ready.  Randy and I walked over to Starbucks for a drink and a small bite (while Mom stayed back in the flat).  We stopped into the tube station and returned Mom's Oyster card so she could get her deposit back.  Then it was back to the flat to finish packing and wait for our airport pickup at noon.

Our driver arrived right on time.  I was a little worried about our transfer to the airport as I had read some reviews of some companies - where the driver was an hour late, and then people missed their flight.  I had booked with Exclusive Airports because they seemed to have mostly good reviews, and my experience was good as well.  The driver got us to the airport in about half an hour, so we had lots of time to check in, get our VAT refunded and get through security.  Thankfully we were able to use the Fast Track security queue.  Even this one was a bit of a wait, however the regular queue was significantly larger.  I don't do well waiting in large queues.

Heathrow Maple Leaf LoungeWe went to the Air Canada Maple Leaf Lounge and bellied up to the buffet.  There were cold salads, cheeses, pasta, chickpea curry, rice and chicken.  You could also get a grilled sandwich made if you liked.  We had our fill of food, and went for a quick walk around the gates to see what there was (which wasn't much).  Then we just hung out until it was time to head to our gate.

We were just leaving the Maple Leaf Lounge to head to the gate when we ran into our neighbours (who were connecting onto the same flight after 3 weeks in Greece and Turkey).  We wandered down to the gate, and shortly afterwards they started boarding.  Well, sort of.  An announcement went out saying that they were ready for people to start boarding.  But when we got to the counter to show our boarding pass, stopped us and said that they weren't ready yet.  Then they started to let us through, but then further down a hallway someone else stopped us and said they weren't ready yet.  Finally they got their shit together and we were allowed to get on the plane. I've been stopped like this, but usually it's just once, not twice.  However while we were  stopped, some guy that obviously didn't care that they weren't ready, pushed his way through.  Seems like rudeness is everywhere.

The flight home was uneventful.  For the return flight meal, Randy had rack of lamb, I had butter chicken and mom had cod.  All three meals were very good (I wish they would have had this selection on the way out).  I know that mine was one of the better meals I had ever had on a plane.  I wasn't able to sleep on the flight, so watched a few movies and read a bit.  Later in the flight, we were given another snack which consisted of finger sandwiches and a warm scone with clotted cream.  I had the scone, and was too full to have anything else.  Mmmmm Clotted Cream !

The flight arrived on time, and since we were in business class, we were the first ones to the customs line, and were through quickly.  Not so quickly was getting our checked baggage.  Our bags had been checked as priority bags, but we waited for a good 45 minutes for our bags to come out.  Our neighbours' bags came out and they were gone before ours started coming out.  Not impressed.

But, our bags finally did make it out, so we were finally able to leave customs.  But not before one of the customs agents hassled us a bit because we didn't claim our tinned cookies on our customs form. The Customs dude was saying we had the opportunity to check off on the form for "Food".  Dude, there is no word on the form that says "Food".  I know, I fill out the form every week and I have read it.  But instead of argue with this young man, I let it go and said nothing. Then it was off to get the car and head back home for a well deserved sleep.


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