Posted by: nativeiowan | January 10, 2011

homeward bound

I am sitting in the departure lounge at London Heathrow airport.

I’m digging the scenery. I have a few more hours to sit and am going to sedate myself nicely for the first leg of my trip between here and Bangkok… only 14 hours.

I have been here a week and really enjoying the hard work. I’ve been working with my lawyer and friend, NM, on a big legal case. He has had me running no less then 12 hours each day for the past 8 days. When I arrived I got off the flight here after 30 some hours of travel, was collected and drove the 2 hours to Swepstone and went straight to work for over 10 hours. That was the easy day. I did not have a chance to be jet-lagged. I was rooted by the end of the first day, had a nice dark ale, a wonderful supper and promptly passed out. Each day has been a repeat of the first. Except of course Sunday, yesterday… we went out Saturday night and were met by other old Gizo friends, RH and family, and got royally pissed at a lovely English pub. NM’s son, Seth, joined us. Seth, at age 5, went with me to stay in Susuka (Gracie’s home village on Choiseul) for a month or more. We lived there in the very early 80s and Seth has ever since been considered one of “our tribe”. Of course we wobbled home to supper after about 3 too many ales then Seth and I drank his fathers fine port to excess, well, until too late. I woke yesterday late and groggy. As punishment NM made me work until 1030 last eve. In it all we achieved amazing stuff.

So I am heading back south. Of course, as Barb states, I bring the snow, and indeed had the weather follow me here.

But I am heading for warmer climes now. Golly, do I look forward to it.

What do I see and hear…

An elderly couple next to is quietly disputing life. He is being waited on by his bossy wife and she is in a fury. We’re in the business class departure lounge and the food here is not to her liking. Now the old boy would be happy with a beer and a packet of chips. But, nooooo… She has just taken 20 minutes to scope the scene out and the old boy ain’t been fed or watered. He is getting cranky. She is a control freak… I am being immensely entertained by it all… is this what Gracie and I sound like?

I am a bit shocked by the bar… an amazing selection of fine scotch whiskey but a nothing selection of beer. God… we’re in England, and though I understand the 27 separate choices in scotch, I have a choice of “Grolsch” and “England’s Beast” beer. Crickey… this is England… the land of fine ale.

As I am not into a whiskey hangover on a plane I am having a couple of Grolschs’ as I wait to get a gate assigned for my flight.

I need to spend more time in England. It is a neat place. On my Solomons passport I qualify as a commonwealth citizen so I can come and go free of charge. This is an old land. My hosts live in what is known as the “manor house’. It has been in her family and is several hundreds (parts of it) years old. The church across the road from them is from the 1500s. I want to, need to explore this land more.

The Asian punk with the mohawk has a fake fur collar.

The aged Italian tart (has amazingly erect nipples) is with a guy who looks like a pimp. She complained about “no vegetarian” then put on her mink stole.

The control freak old lady still jabbers on and the old boy takes it all without emotion… or too much emotion.

I have not seen or read any news while here. I have been at work and sleep. Something happened in the US but I don’t know what. I watch the big TV across the room and see Obama and his babe looking sad in front of a church. Perhaps I missed something impotent?

The white boy delivering food scratches his ass.

The black girl moving wine bottles looks profoundly bored.

The heavyset Asian lady cleaning tables has a nice smile.

Silence… the lady hassling the old boy next to me has walked away. I had forgotten what silence was… golly, she jabbers on… non-stop and meaningless verbiage to fill some unknown personal inadequacy. I want to talk to the guy but am afraid I will offend so I comment via word-on-the-web rather than make personal contact.

I’m on my 3rd beer and feel the buzz coming.

She is back; silence is golden. She sounds German. That explains it.

I see a fair number of Hasidic Jews.  I dig the hat and the curls. The long black coat.

I spoke to the old boy and had a delightful chat. Now they know me and I am going to have to move in order not to become family to them…

Life is grand.

I am going to go in search of a shower before I fly.

I recall the James Mitchner’s book “ The Drifters”. In there they gave me the 3 rules of travel…

1)    Shower/ bathe every chance available

2)    Never eat at a place named “mom’s”

3)    Do your laundry at every available opportunity

Considering I have, yet again, done this trip as fully “carry-on” I have literally what I am wearing and one change on clothes. My change is dirty. I like the idea that my clothes all looks the same (this horrifies my kids) so no one know if I have changed or not. FYI, I put on clean clothes this morn. And will travel until I hit Brisbane (some 30+ hours from now) with what I have on with no chance of reprieve. Shitting the shorts would be bad news.

So it will be nice to have a shower, change the jocks and brush the chops.

A couple more beers and I will be ready to pass out on the plane and arrive in Bangkok weary and worn.

Life is grand.

More later


  1. Some 22 year old opened fire on a fgathering in Tuscan, AZ killing
    6 and wounding 12 at a rally of some sort for an Arizona Congresswoman Gabriella “Can’t remember her last name”….Shot her point blank in the head…She is in a coma in critical condition…Took place in a grocery store parking lot…What IS this world coming to? Sounds like you are a bit worse for wear and tear…Enjoy your flight back to your homeland…Your commentary on airport people sounds like the opening narration of a movie…Homeward Bound Safely, my friend….

    • yea, caught the news some where in my travels. Life is a curious business.

      Back in sunny Queensland…

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