Departing From Flock To Fedora 2023 - Part IV

During a layover at London Heathrow (LHR), we explored the Duty-Free stores to stuff more souvenirs in our backpacks. With a rude awakening about the departure gates being in another terminal, we rushed through the London Underground to make it there in time before the boarding gate closed for good.

Departing From Flock To Fedora 2023 - Part IV

We came across a chatty Indian person who was the shopkeeper for the Duty-Free store with whom, we had a heartful conversation. Once we finished the purchases, we found a Harry Potter store on our way to the departure gates. As Sumantro Mukherjee was a huge fan of the novels, I took a break on a nearby bench while Sumantro explored the store. I also went in to check out some London-themed souvenirs. When Sumantro headed back to me at around 0700 pm Greenwich Mean Time, we noticed that the departure gates were now showing up on the informative displays. It dawned upon us then that our designated departure gates were located in a different terminal altogether and we barely had thirty minutes to get there before the gates would close.

A part of the moody overcast weather visible through the London Heathrow (LHR) airport while we were making our way through the terminal 

We checked up on the officials available around us who told us that it would take us to ride a train in the London Underground (a.k.a. Tube) network from the current terminal to the designated terminal. As the train journey itself would have taken around twenty minutes, we decided not to dawdle anymore and rushed down to get ourselves a free limited boarding pass for the train. We did get ourselves some downtime to catch our breaths when we barely made the train but once the train reached the designated terminal, it was time for us again to rush through the terminal. At around 0725 pm Greenwich Mean Time, we finally reached the departure gate and we joined the queue of passengers who had already started boarding the aeroplane, row by row.

We had a quick yet antsy train ride in the London Underground (a.k.a. Tube) network as we were very close to missing our flight to Mumbai

While the boarding began for World Traveler Plus passengers only, the British Airways officials thankfully allowed both Sumantro and me through the queue. Only I had the World Traveler Plus ticket and Sumantro had the World Traveler Base ticket but the official let us through noticing that we were travelling together - a gesture that I really appreciated. This time around, we were not as lucky to get ourselves the neighbouring seats as I got myself a window seat in the World Traveler Plus area while Sumantro had to make do with a window seat in the World Traveler Base area. We decided to dispose of the remaining international roaming data balance by having a WhatsApp call and the flight took off from the airport soon after everyone was boarded.

From left to right - An Akashdeep Dhar who "has had enough" of the long travel and a Sumantro Mukherjee who "cannot take any more" of the long travel

I was provided with toiletries in a zip-enclosed cloth bag, a towel, a bedsheet, a meal menu, and a warm face wipe as soon as the in-flight service began. It was around 0830 pm Greenwich Mean Time then and I knew that the day was getting drawn on for too long. I decided to tune in to watch a movie called Cocaine Bear (2023) from the in-flight entertainment system while I waited for the dinner to arrive as the premise sounded fun. Soon enough, the dinners were served where I had Kadai Chicken Curry made with Stir-Fried Spinach and Coconut and served with Biryani Rice for the main course and Placid Raita with Lime Pickle for the side dishes. I started with some warm tea with milk to soothe my throat and a Bulgur-Carrot Salad and Lemon Labneh.

A rather blurry photograph of the bountiful amount of food made available to me on the British Airways flight for the dinner

Once I was done with the dinner, I decided to catch up on sleep. After around five hours of sleep, more than half of the flight's duration was through and we were about two and half hours away from the destination. I had lost track of time but I knew for a fact that it was morning time in the place that we were flying right above. This is when I was provided with beverages as well as the breakfast meal which consisted of starters made of fresh seasonal fruits, the main course made of The Original Full British Scrambled Eggs, Chicken Sausage, Baked Beans, Button Mushrooms and Grilled Tomato and the bakery made of Breakfast Pastries. While tuning into the in-flight entertainment system, I checked the status of the journey while munching on some delicious breakfast.

A rather blurry photograph of the energizing kind of food made available to me on the British Airways flight for the breakfast