Virgin Clubhouse, Hong Kong International

Damn, it’s good to be a frequent flyer. All that travelling on Delta last year finally paid off with Gold status, and Delta’s partnership with Virgin Atlantic means that at Hong Kong, after a sleepless night flight, itself following an endless trek around Changi airport for dinner, I got to sit in a pleasant space while nice people continually bring me food and drinks. If I wasn’t so tired, I’d be embarrassed.
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The King In Yellow, returned again

Coming back to Singapore was a lot was easier than going out. For a start, instead of a decrepit 747, the plane on the way back was a nice new 777, with an entertainment system that didn’t crap out after 90 minutes. That’s more than you could say for me; I watched the end of the second Captain America film, the first half hour of the first episode of True Detective, and then I woke up with drool all down my shirt, many hours later.
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Cheerio, Canada

The flight back to London from Halifax leaves at 23:45, which is a harsh hour. On the positive side, that left me with a whole day to wander around Dartmouth, visit my favourite coffee shop (Two If By Sea), have a relaxing dinner down by the ferry terminal and nap a lot, but it also meant going to Halifax International at ten o’clock on a Saturday night. This is not a fun thing.
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Flying from Singapore to Canada

The flight back to London wasn’t great. My seat was 55F: in the middle of the back row of the plane, boxed in on either side, with a malfunctioning entertainment unit that consistently waited until I was half way through a film before suddenly lapsing into a blur of static and grey smears. A positive result of this situation was that I went to sleep, rather than staying awake for the entire film and watching too much television.
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Terminal Ennui

I caught the slowest taxi in Singapore to get to the airport tonight. Usually travelling out along the road to Changi is terrifying, as each driver seems intent on reenacting the final assault on the Death Star from Star Wars, but tonight my driver trundled all the way there at a sluggish 80 km/h, his vehicle throbbing and groaning as he ploughed along. This was no less frightening than any other trip to the airport: instead of being scared of crashing into the back of another car, I was scared of another car crashing into the back of us. But as a cavalcade of Mercedes drove bumper-to-tail past us, we avoided any collisions and I was deposited at Terminal 1 unscathed, just irritated. Quite irrationally, because arriving any more quickly at Changi would only lengthen the time I’d spend sitting around waiting for my flight to depart.
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There and back again

Coming back through Narita I was suffused with a dreadful feeling of deja vu, until I realized I’d been in the exact spot just four days before, standing in a line to have my carry-on bags rescanned as I transferred from one flight to another. This time round I had an extra suspect package, a brand new breast pump that had exercised the suspicions of the Seattle TSA, but which didn’t spook the Japanese in the slightest.

My trip back has been less unpleasant than the way out, because I’m going home and I’m not utterly deprived of sleep, but then again on the way out I wasn’t coughing and sneezing every five minutes, or dosed up with extra-strength Tylenol, which can cast a dampener on festivities. Drugs aren’t always fun, y’all.
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Complaints from the 21st century

My plan to force my body clock onto US regional settings is half complete. I went to bed at 10:30, failed to sleep for a couple of hours, and then kept waking up either desperate for the toilet or horribly dehydrated. (I think I’m coming down with a cold, which doesn’t really help.) Reveille was at 3:15, and after a quick shower I kissed my wife goodbye and took a taxi to the airport.
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