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.

Unlike Heathrow or Changi, YHZ is not designed for vast hordes of international travelers. By ten p.m. most of the shops have shut, both inside and outside the security cordon. Tim Horton’s won’t be open to sell you a doughnut after you’ve been X-rayed. Starbucks has shut up, so there’s no chance for you to dose up on coffee – although why would you do that when it’s so close to midnight? But still, outside Chickenburger is still open: inside, it’s a desolate landscape where there’s nothing to eat except chewing gum and maple syrup flavoured biscuits.

I bought a trail running magazine at the kiosk, and was slightly annoyed to find that there was a special feature on trails around Halifax. After a week of doing nothing at all, I wished I’d had this stimulus to get me out exercising, but I think on balance it was a good thing that I spent the week sleeping like a lazy cat, only making breaks from this schedule to occasionally help wrangle our daughter. And so it goes.

The flight is packed; there’s only this one flight per day to London so it’s always jammed, but at least the person next to me isn’t an enormous lump overflowing into my seat. Now there’s just five and a bit hours until the giant metal tube disgorges me into another country, another time zone, another something or other.

One response to “Cheerio, Canada”

  1. I am so unaccustomed to air travel that I still get surprised by how basic and un-fun to be in those airports can be. Such as Terminal 2C Barcelona or the ex Eastern bloc Berlin airport. Oh and how expensive the duty free is too.

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