Okay, so here is what happened to me as I tried to get home for Christmas. It is a story in the style of "Planes, Trains and Automobiles".
My journey was fairly simple on paper; Dundee to Edinburgh Airport on the Megabus, then fly down to Bournemouth. Simple and very direct.
Perhaps my first sign of concern was when I stepped out of front door at 7:30 am straight into a layer of snow. I'd been looking forward to a drop of Scottish snow for weeks. So it was a mixed blessing to see it right then. But being the hardy sorts up there the megabus arrived on time. Good lads.
However once on the motorway the panic set in. Would we make it in time? What would happen if I didn't and the plane left without me? The wheels skidded about and the driver dude pushed through like a hero. Got there in time to see the gate number flash up, legged it through the security bit, bundled up to the gate (furthest away one naturally) to find a lot of people sitting around. The view from the window indicated a snowy scene with no movement - at all. Snow-tastic!
At list of things at do while you wait 5 hours for snow to melt.
1 - play with your iPhone
2 - read your book
3 - recharge your iPhone by sitting next to the only mains socket which is located by the toilet entrance. Classy.
4 - buy 1l of whiskey
5 - laugh at a bunch of fellow travellers queuing to get on plane as they are told it has in fact landed in Glasgow now.
6 - watch a pissed guy walk around asking everyone if they have seen his luggage. They hadn't. Presumably because he had checked it in but had forgotten.
7 - enjoy the interactive drama of the following announcement; "would the passengers waiting for flight bm1234 please go to gate 21 (everyone cheers) where we will give a refreshment voucher due to further delays (boooo)
8 - laugh at the passengers all come back in as their replacement bus to Glasgow has also got stuck in the snow
9 - get on the plane at last.
Journey uneventful. Except for the thunder storm which meant we couldn't land at Bournemouth. So we went to Stanstead! Nice.
It was at this point I declared loudly, "I'm getting my whiskey out. Who wants some?"
And thus we had a great time. Sitting around, waiting for the bus. Like a scene from Home Alone with the mum trying to get home. My fellow travellers were a video editor, software engineer and an archeaologist / primary school teacher. We all had good times and watched Wimborne Road on my phone. We could talk about films and editing and the editor guy knew people I know. We also had a 'longest trip ever' show down won by a guy who was 57 hrs on a train.
My efforts to start a sing song of 3 Coins in a Fountain in the style of Planes, Trains and Automobiles fell on deaf ears - recreating the scene perfectly. Which is just as well as I don't know the rest of the words.
Epilogue - got back to Bournemouth at 1am. 13 hours late. Half of my £25 bottle of whiskey has gone.
Conclusion: Christmas time is a great time for making new friends if your attitude is right. Who knows how is sitting next to you and what cool things they have done? And, my friends, always travel with fine whiskey.