Getting To Australia

Bangkok to Sydney

After we arrived at the gate in Bangkok, we had about an hour and a half before the plane would take off again for Sydney. We were told to disembark the aircraft while they had it cleaned and restocked for our final leg of the trip. I had heard that Bangkok airport was impressive, and wanted very much to walk around to witness it for myself. Unfortunately, my first impression of the airport was disturbing after visiting the bathroom. I won't get into details, but next time I'm using the facilities on the plane beforehand.

There were also a number of people hanging around the gates that looked like they'd either been sleeping there for days, or they were in very poor shape. After the bathroom scene, I decided I didn't really want to find out - so we headed right back upstairs to the departure gate for our flight to get back on as soon as possible. The area of the airport we were in wasn't really that impressive. It was certainly airy with lots of open space and glass windows. If only they'd spend more time on the cleanliness of the place - it would have more promise then. April: I suspect that our inexperience with travelling to a country such as Thailand made us a bit leery of the unexpected things we saw.

We got back on board our plane and got back into our leisure suits. In fact everyone did the same, spawning the remark from April that we looked like some sort of cult. The cult of the First Class passengers - yeah, I think that would fly in Hollywood :-) During this trip, the person in front of Steve decided not to sit in First Class, but would rather sit with her husband in one class below - now that's devotion. So, April seized that opportunity to take her seat.

First class is not without its bugs though. Remember that light that Steve apparently turned on in the middle of the night on our first flight? Well, it happened again tonight, but I didn't touch a thing - honest. Then, the passenger seated in the middle row had a whole psychedelic light show display, turning his three lights on and off in random sequences with his mind. To top it off, the passenger seated in front of April wasn't able to turn his seat into a bed - so he moved to April's old seat. Maybe all these aren't so coincidental - perhaps April and I give off a strange Canadian magnetic field....

Okay, now for the dinner menu:


Starters

Terrine of smoked salmon with crab and baby coriander salad

Aubergine and courgette wraps stuffed with walnut puree and cream cheese

Roast tomato and fennel soup

Fresh salad leaves with choice of dressing


Main

Veal zurichoise with carrots, snow peas and fettuccine

Baked chicken with lemon and sage, ratatouille and rosemary potatoes

Pan fried barramundi served with a coconut curry sauce and fried rice

Chilli prawn salad


Snacks

Bacon roll served with tomato ketchup

Roast tomato and fennel soup with a side salad

Fresh pasta with your choice of oregano and cracked pepper sauce or chilli, fennel and tomato sauce

Warm pastramie baguette Greek salad with herb croutons

A selection of finger sandwiches

Duchy of Cornwall biscuits

A selection of cheese and fruit


Dessert and Cheese

Apple strudel

Lime bavarois with fresh raspberrys and mango

A selection of cheese

A basket of fresh fruit Espresso, cappuccino, coffee or tea


This time, April had a small dinner, choosing a couple of items from the starters list. Steve had the chicken, but thought it was a tad dry - not what you'd expect in First darling ;-) After dinner, it was time for bed. Learning from previous nights yet again, Steve put on the eye shade right away to maximize his sleeping time. This was one of the best nights sleep he'd had on an airplane - waking up after about 4 hours, then going back to sleep for a couple more. April: I was feeling somewhat better by this point in the trip but had developed a nasty cough. I got up a couple of times to go to the lavatory so as not to disturb everyone in First with my coughing, and the flight attendant was really good to me - first she had me gargle with warm salt water, and when I came back out of the lavatory after doing so she had made me a hot whisky toddy, which she insisted I drink! I could only get down maybe half of it but it certainly did have the effect of putting me back to sleep. :-)

At about 4:30am Sydney time the cabin crew was providing breakfast. On the menu this morning:


Breakfast

Chilled fruit juice

Raspberry banana smoothie

A selection of fruit, plain yoghurts and cereals

Fresh seasonal fruit plate

Warm breads and breakfast pastries


At 5:30 Sydney time, the pilot came over the intercom and said that it was 20 degrees centigrade already - wow! On our approach to Sydney, we could see the Opera House and the Harbour Bridge. It was a spectacular sight, but unfortunately I wasn't able to get any good pictures since it was still really dark out. April: I watched and watched for my first glimpse of something recognizable - and there it was, the bridge and then the opera house. Wow, wow, wow!

Before touching down, the cabin was sprayed with an insectiside to ensure that we weren't bringing any unwanted guests into the country. A little weird, but understandable. We also had to fill out customs forms and state that we weren't bringing in any food products. They were pretty serious about the food thing - you couldn't bring in meats, cheeses, or fruit - not even anything packaged products!




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