Our flight out of Montreal was delayed by two hours, due to a technical fault. Well, at 10am it was announced that our 2pm scheduled departure was going to be 4pm,and that prediction was only half an hour optimistic vs our eventual 430 departure.
A few immediate conclusions:
Whatever Air Canada can do, it seems to. Involve adding at least two hours to my travel time (eg see departing late from Hong Kong)
If your flight is two hours delayed, it gives you time to turn around when you’re driving to the airport and pick up the water bottles everyone forgot (and without which the children refuse to do anything)
… But if your flight is delayed by two hours, the airline still wants you to check in ahead of the original schedule (so, I guess, if they rustle up a replacement plane they can revert to the previous schedule and get you all out of there)
… And if you have a 2 hour connection in Narita, don’t even bother trying to get the Air Canada staff in Montreal to sort it out. Their best recommendation was "maybe wait for tomorrow" but since tomorrow’s flight could also be two hours late you could easily get suckered into never making it back to Singapore at all.
Instead, after a lot of trudging around the airport to get bags checked in and some pointless queuing up looking for a solution to our impossible connection, we went off to get our flight to Narita.
Montreal airport is bloody enormous (like, gate 52 is a good fifty yards from gate 51, etc) but we had a nice view of the plane we’d be sat on for the next 14 hours. The flight itself was fine: somehow much less stressful even than my solo flight from Hong Kong to Toronto. Perhaps that was because I wasn’t worrying about whether I’d miss my connection, as I did when flying to Halifax. Instead, I knew I was going to miss my connection. Still, we were also on a Dreamliner, and I watched Blockers and The Death Of Stalin and then zoned out through Sherlock Gnomeo.
The slightly bad news when we got to Japan was that we had an onward flight booked, through Haneda International. Haneda is a much nicer airport than Narita, but it’s an hour plus away from Narita, which was where we’d flown in, with all of our enormous mound of luggage. Also, Narita is enormous and very slow to walk through, and in best Japanese bureaucratic style, there was an exceptionally inefficient fingerprinting booth set up just before Immigration. And we were an hour by bus from Haneda.
So now it’s 11pm local time, and there’s still almost two hours before we take off, and I’m hoping against hope that the children sleep on the flight back, because I’ve had about an hour’s sleep and feel dreadful. But then tomorrow is not far away.