I am definitely getting behind in blogging because sleep became a necessity at some point. It is now noon on Boxing Day. And so much to report on but we will now go back in time.
One could accurately recount that the trip to London was not fun, nor even amusing. . A seventeen hour flight to Dubai with incredible knee pain and no sleep – but a strangely induced sleep spate which will be explained. Spate is a perfect word as used herein : succession, run, cluster, string, outbreak, rash, epidemic, explosion, plague, wave, flurry, rush, flood, deluge, torrent, outpouring. I am always exceedingly jealous of those people who board a plane, close their eyes and sleep from the moment they board the plane to the moment they hurry off the plane. Not me and as I had stooped to Economy Class, comfortable would not describe my state. But upon the fourteenth hour of the seventeen hour torture I discovered something called Arabic podcasts, I could, and did listen, to Fazza (aka the Sultan, aka SSS, aka Crown Prince of Dubai) read aloud his poetry. It was riveting but, in Arabic, not English. The title of the poem was in English and one could almost imagine what he was saying. The topics varied from pigeons, to a love of camels, some romance to a celebration of his country. The later was rather awe inspiring, entirely awe inspiring as the love he has for his country was readily and obviously apparent. I was lulled into something that resembled sleep and it did bring me peace.
Then it was off the plane, into a wheelchair and then after some confusion it was to the Business Lounge where I experienced the utmost of courtesy and service – making me feel like Royalty with a capital R.
But back to the beginning. Everything perfect at SFO – arriving on time with Personal Driver, being wheeled through Security and onto the plane by polite and deferential staff, being accosted by a rude woman, asking politely for a change from venue and getting a more esteemed seating arrangement. But despite the attention of the best staff on earth and in the skies, I was miserable. Dreadful knee pain, an inability to sleep AND a rude guy next to me that snored. As usual, many friends made and so many: “You Made My Days” from staff and fellow passengers. But increasing irritation ensued, occasioned by the pain and the snorer. I have spoken of this before but shall again.Somehow I discovered Arab podcasts and there was Fazza, speaking Arabic (which is not my first language) but it was riveting! There were English titles, and one could imagine, with the passion in his voice when speaking of his country, with tenderness when speaking of camels and pigeons and other matters. I could not understand I a word he said but somehow felt most close to him. It relaxed me and for about three hours I achieved a degree of peace. Most restful and intimate in a strange way, feeling I was with him and he was comforting me. It was strange and amazing.
Emeritus Airlines is the best managed airlines in the world,, or in my world anyway. The staff is exceptionally well trained, their explanations and guidance superb – they have thought of everything and did so in great detail and with great caring. All rather amazing. The staff comes from a number of countries, speak perfect English and love living in Dubai, which is required. It is a mix of so many people, all of whom made me feel comfortable and accepted. They live quite inexpensively and happily. They are paid well and on the seventeen hour flight they get to go sleep and get pyjamas. Most considerate and doable – they work so hard and, are, by and large, most gracious. Some not, one or two, But that is life.
While on the ‘layover” in Dubai, in the Business Class Lounge, it was possible to have a shower. Yes a shower – it felt SO good. The airport in Dubai is HUGE but not at all like Heathrow, in that there are trains that whisk you from one terminal to another. I was pushed by a guy who knew his way around, but it was rather heaven. The airport is an architectural marvel with pillars and light and everything. Those guys do know what they are doing. I cannot wait to spend more time in Dubai, which I shall at the conclusion of my London time – a week. Goodie, goodie, goodie. So I boarded the plane after my shower and having my shoes cleaned. I had a bed but did not use it much as I was having too much fun. There is a cocktail lounge where one can eat and drink and talk to the bartender, who was a woman. We spoke of many things, of cabbages and kings etc. etc. We actually spoke , in the main, of the role of women and the enormous benefits of childlessness. Then, as more and more passengers fell asleep, most of the staff gathered in celebration. It was so wonderfully joyous and we had so much fun, joking and laughing with one another. I did finally go to bed, probably getting a couple of hours sleep, which was most refreshing. Then a taxi with a wonderful driver speeding through the streets of London – there was no traffic whatsoever on Christmas morn. Then to my hotel wherein I was greeted with much enthusiasm. I attempted breakfast but was so miserable that it was off to my room wherein I slept for about four hours. Downstairs to the lobby bar where the words of woman staff member brought tears to my eyes. I waived at her, she walked over, took my hands in hers and said:
She: We all have been waiting for you!
Me: Oh my goodness. Your words are making me cry.
She: Oh no!
Me: But they are tears of joy, not sorrow.
She sped off to work, saying she would see me later. Sitting at an adjoining table was a family, playing cards (Uno) and laughing joyously. I commented on their happiness with one another and the mother said:
She: It is because we are not in one another’s pockets.
Me: That is so clever! I am going to write it down and put it on my blog,
Of course, I had to look it up.”The phrase living in each other’s pockets means that they spend too much time together. It stands to reason that the phrase you’ve quoted means the opposite. That they wish to live in each other’s pockets, not out of each other’s pockets.”
I met three other people and laughed with them but became sleepy and went to bed. Awoke in the middle of the night starving – ordered a club sandwich from room service, recorded a video which was placed on Instagram.
But then found the strangest message which will be reproduced here. It was/is all rather mind boggling but, I was able to make a joke about it.
Me: Why are you praying to Allah to make me safe? You own the airlines, instead just hire some competent mechanics.
I am terrible, I do admit. Such a brat! This all is most unlikely, so one has to laugh.