21 August 2008

My Trek to the Airport

I showed up to the airport with 71 kilograms of checked baggage. More important, I made it from Central London, through Victoria Station, on and off a train, through the South Terminal, to the North terminal (via another train) with 71 kilograms of checked baggage.

When all of the bags were sitting next to my door in the wee hours of this morning, I guess I just didn't even consider what the trek to the airport was going to be like.

I made it to the check-in counter with sweat dripping from my face, weighed the bags, and began the negotiation. The first concession I asked for was a 32 kilogram limit per bag (rather than 23). Granted. Then I asked for the third suitcase at no cost. This one didn't come so easily, but after making a small scene by rifling through my bag, throwing my possessions, piece by piece, into the nearest rubbish bin, the woman behind the counter happily obliged. I ended up getting the combined weight of all my checked bags down to 67 kg, after parting ways with a sleeping bag and a few bedsheets (which didn't have much of a future, anyway).

I bought my ticket for the Gatwick Express on the train, instead of the ticket kiosk. It was the same price and worth not needing to deal with any more problems with all my worldly possessions in tow. When the gentleman came by my seat to sell me a ticket, he asked whether it would be one-way or return ticket. I froze for a second. Gulp. "One way?"

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