As usual I am scribbling in my moleskin (although I suspect this is faux and no moles have suffered) on board a passenger airline which is inching its way towards the planets busiest runway. I’ve been up since the early hours and I have visited two of Britain’s international airports already this morning. At last these wheels are about to leave British soil ( I say soil, I mean tarmac – would be ever so slightly concerned if Heathrow’s fast lane was clad in soil).
American Airlines appear to have messed up. I can deal with that. So long as the mess up is handled professionally and apologies are issued, etc. I am a polite passenger. I would put myself in the polite but assertive category I think. But when enquiries about my return flight, cancelled outward flight, and vegetarian meals where met with witless shrugs, and even wry smiles (imagine!) I decided to passively aggressively diss the airline on my weblog. Wild crazy rogue that I am.
Despite it being rush hour, the coach from Stanstead to Heathrow made it round the M25 just in time, but the delay had added travel time to the inevitably knackering time zone change for what promises to be the longest day of the year for me (notwithstanding the looming solstice). My meeting with the company director has been delayed by a couple of hours, and unlike efficient GermanWings, who in recent weeks offered bottled water to compensate for a 45 minute delay, we have had nothing but sour faces from American Airlines ground staff. Being in the Public Diplomacy business, I can see that this is really no good at all for nation branding.
I am very hungry. My life line is the good spirit and smart arse quips from the New Yorkers on board. And at last we are in the air……………