Before I injured myself doing the lead climbing test one of the other people I’d gone with had mentioned the possibility of getting climbing outside at the weekend but I quickly realised that this wasn’t going to happen for me thanks to my injury and so nothing else of interest happened until I flew back to England for Christmas.
As I didn’t yet have a car there were two options for getting me to Kansas City airport for my first flight on the way home. The first was a shared ride shuttle service that would get me to the airport four hours before my flight and cost $40. The other option was to pay $70 and get to the airport when I wanted. Deciding that I could not justify spending an extra $30 for a couple of hours less in an airport I was left sitting around the airport for quite some time. Thankfully they had wi-fi and between that and getting both breakfast and lunch while I was there the time went reasonably quickly.
My connection this time was in Houston. I’d learnt on trip out that on these small internal flights even hand luggage can end up in the hold at the gate if it’s too large and so this time I’d packed cleverly and had a small rucksack with my laptop and one or two other bits inside my bigger hand luggage and which I took out and took on the plane. Arriving in Houston I put the rucksack back in the main bag and this required a tiny little bit of squashing but then all of a suddenly didn’t. Given that I was carrying some glasses as presents for my family this was a little disconcerting and after eating I checked the bag and found out that I did indeed break one. Idiot!
The flight to the UK was delayed for quite a while as apparently the pilot that was meant to fly had called in sick shortly before he was meant to be at the airport. When I found this out I headed to the bar only to find two other expats who were on the same flight and also having a drink while waiting. Not that we were living up to stereotypes or anything! Eventually they found us another pilot and thanks to making up some time on the way we arrived into Heathrow not too late where I met my parents who had very kindly come and picked me up.