My little day trip to Melbourne was fun, but exhausting. My cab to the airport arrived a little early, so I left home at around 5.30am and was at the airport about a quarter to 6. IN THE MORNING. I'm an early riser but that's ridiculous.
Naturalmente my first stop was the little coffee bar in the departures lounge (where I got myself a surprisingly good cup of morning joe). I spotted my co-worker disappearing through the departures gate so I gave her a quick call and confirmed that she'd already checked me in at the electronic ticket kiosk thingy. Truly, I miss some of the glamour of pre-deregulation air travel in Oz but being able to do so much of the process online and being able to check-in ahead are pretty convenient improvements. Aussies, remember when we had to ring up the day before and confirm the flight?
Mind you, at times I would kill for a bit of proper in-flight service. Cutlery. Glassware. Hot food. Hotter flight attendants.
We got into Melbourne before the shop opened, and the shop manager was stuck on a delayed train and so her plans of opening up early for us were dashed. So we headed off to Degraves Street nearby for breakfast. Fortified by a truly fantastic cup of coffee and a delicious BLT baguette we headed back to the shop and worked solidly until 5pm.
I installed windows, I drew up plans, I measured, I discussed options and at one point I even got the iron out and ironed a banner that we later hung in the window. The shop looked pretty good, just in need of a bit of tweaking, some layout adjustments and making some of the displays look a little stronger.
We flew back on mega-cheap Tiger Airways. From the hastily built demountable terminal, to the long Av Gas scented walk across the tarmac, to the worn fabrics on the seat, travel with Tiger was an experience. A couple of the cabin crew were very friendly but they all seemed very young and some quite inept. Especially the chief flight attendant (no 'purser' here) who kept stuffing up the safety drill announcement, making some of the other crew giggle. Still, a shortish flight and a $6 beer later we arrived back at Sydney airport about 8pm.
Somewhere along the line I also picked up a cold, so I'm going to head into the office late this morning. I just wish I could get another of those BLT baguettes before I do so.