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I finally made it to Melbourne this weekend, just a little later than planned …

Friday started with a trip to the hairdresser for pre-flight coif and colour. Given the fact that this was the first time I’d coloured my hair, I was a little disappointed that the supposed ‘chocolate’ colour turned out the same colour as my hair. Even I can’t notice the difference.

Quick dash home to grab the bags and kiss the kids, then off to airport. Here’s the story as it unfolded on Twitter:

Determined to remain upbeat, I found a silver lining:

I also took some holiday snaps:

Of Sky News

Of Sky News

And the NewsLink shop

And the NewsLink shop

And Australian Way

And the Australian Way store

And made friends with fellow non-passengers:

Jodie, Ben, Me, Steve

Jodie, Ben, Me, Steve

My upbeat mood was getting harder to maintain:

So, I went in search of another silver lining:

Silver lining #2

And found it

Day became night and I began to feel like Tom Hanks in the movie ‘The Terminal’:

And of the other planes taking off

All the other planes were taking off

And a cleaner who thought I was weird, because I was holding my book up at him ...

And the cleaners were moving in

So I settled in for the night

So I settled in for the night

Then, after 6 1/2 hours, the flight was cancelled:

And that was that.

And that was that.

We were told to return the following morning. I fleetingly pondered joining the 200 other passengers queuing at the airline service desk and ranting and raving at the staff, but I couldn’t be bothered. So I went home and phoned the airline. They sounded relieved that I was being pleasant (courtesy of the silver linings), and happily rebooked me on their partner airline for the next day. They also changed my return flight so I could still spend two days with my daughter.

On Saturday, I got up and did it all over again:

It felt like ‘Groundhog Day’. Even as we boarded, I was too frightened to get my hopes up:

Trying not to get excited—would this plane actually take off?

I was actually making secret plans to hijack the plane if it didn’t take off …

This time, I made it. My gorgeous daughter and I were finally reunited, only about 20 hours later than planned:

Reunited at last!

Reunited at last!

We’ve had a lovely weekend together. As she’s about to start exams, I stocked her fridge and freezer:

IMG_2816

More cooking than I’ve done in a long while …

IMG_2819

Better stocked than my freezer at home

We even had a visit to radiology, but nothing serious. My job is done and I can fly home again. Let’s hope tonight’s flight takes off as scheduled. However, if tonight’s news features a story about a red-haired middle-aged lady who’s been locked up for assaulting airline staff, you’ll know who it is and why …

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(Published in the anthology, 'Jukebox', OOTA, 2013.)

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