Southerly by David Haywood

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Southerly: Getting There is Half the Fun

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  • Sacha, in reply to Geoff Lealand,

    sounds like residential aged care

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19745 posts Report

  • Geoff Lealand, in reply to Sacha,

    Which explains my general dislike of uniforms....

    Screen & Media Studies, U… • Since Oct 2007 • 2562 posts Report

  • Dinah Dunavan, in reply to David Haywood,

    It seems like a dream now, but last year when we landed at LAX the immigration man actually joked with us.

    Dunedin • Since Jun 2008 • 186 posts Report

  • BenWilson,

    Worth noting in the shitty airport stakes that when I passed through Charles de Gaulle airport I noticed a piece of the concrete architrave, about the size of a Jeep Grand Cherokee, next to where the aircraft I was boarded in, was missing, as though a giant had bitten a chunk out. Even more alarming, they apparently spat the chunk out onto the tarmac next to the wing. I thought it was the French being damned untidy.

    Half an hour later I was waiting to be given the shits by an officious fellow at Heathrow and I saw on TV that Charles de Gaulle airport's upper floors had collapsed, killing 4 people, only 30 minutes before.

    I've often wondered about that incident. The architrave must have collapsed while I was still in the building, and could hardly have failed to have been noticed by staff (it was about 20 meters to the ground). But they boarded us and flew us to England without any indication. I prefer that to the idea that such a structural failure could have simply been worked around, as they calmly parked aircraft loaded with fuel and conveyed tens of thousands of unwitting people into them right next to a potential disaster which did eventually happen.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 10657 posts Report

  • BenWilson,

    The worst once over I ever got was in Auckland, upon returning from Amsterdam. Several hours of being searched and questioned. I formed an opinion that they based almost all of it on profiling and my body language, which they read very well. I was actually very nervous for 2 reasons- firstly there was an irregularity in the way I'd boarded the aircraft, which was actually to both my and the airline's advantage, but must have looked fully dodgy. Secondly my jacket would probably have pinged any swab or sniffer dog just because of what had been in there whilst in the Dam. I didn't have anything on me, but the last thing I wanted was a cavity search, the idea is horrid.

    Humourously they opened and swabbed practically everything else I had, but the jacket, which I hung on a chair as soon as I was taken aside, was never even looked at. Hidden in plain sight, as they say. I was shitting myself until they came back with the swab results. The searching officer looked me sternly in the eyes and said that they "contained strong traces of heroin and explosives" followed by "how do I explain that?". I think the wave of relief that came over me must have been palpable. It was so ridiculous that I knew it must be a bullshit trick they play to get you to 'fess. Some kind of wild fishing expedition. I fought down the urge to say "you did say heroin OR explosives, right? Because I'm hardly going to blow my own drugs up!". But instead I figured the best thing to do was to act scared and confused. A few minutes later they let me go.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 10657 posts Report

  • Graham Dunster, in reply to Emma Hart,


    Laughs heartily (but quietly).

    Nah, it's not that bad, as long as you're not heading to Cairo or similar.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2009 • 184 posts Report

  • Graham Dunster, in reply to Bart Janssen,


    Auckland • Since Nov 2009 • 184 posts Report

  • Paul Campbell, in reply to Geoff Lealand,

    The aisles on Air New Zealand are so narrow these days that some air hostesses can barely fit down them--and sleeping in an aisle seat means that you get bumped awake every few minutes.

    IMHO the number one seat to avoid on a plane is the aisle one on the window side just past where the aisle narrows past the toilet or galley - either the first row or sometimes the second (especially if the first row is 2 seats and the second 3) at first glance it's great because you have lots of lg room, but in reality in the dark someone trips over you every 5 minutes all night

    Dunedin • Since Nov 2006 • 2623 posts Report

  • Emma Hart, in reply to Graham Dunster,

    Nah, it’s not that bad, as long as you’re not heading to Cairo or similar.

    Ahahahahaha... yeah. The first half of the trip we've already booked, deposited, and paid for flights for, is in Egypt. It's our dream trip, and already postponed and abridged (Syria? Yeah, nah) once.

    We're not leaving until just after Christmas. I'm assuming by then that Cairo will be an oasis of peace and democracy.

    Christchurch • Since Nov 2006 • 4651 posts Report

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