Friday, December 24, 2010

Liveblogging our Christmas voyage

After last night's travel debacle, we scoured the interwebs for weather reports and forecasts and cheap available fares. We are now booked on a Virgin train from London Euston to Liverpool, where we will get a flight to Belfast. The Irishman's brother will drive us back to Dublin where last night they got another 8 INCHES OF SNOW! I'm starting to think that if we get there, we may not get back.

So here we go... I'll try to update as often as I can with anecdotes from the journey.

8:10: we're leaving the house early... Just in case.

8:35: first coffee of the day - I'm thinking there will be many today.

8:48: It is dog central in Euston Station!!! I've seen so far 1 Leonberger, 1 Bichon Frise, 2 English Cocker Spaniels, 1 Cavalier King Charles Spaniel. So cute!

8:54: They just announced the train platform for the train to Holyhead where the ferry to Dublin departs, and about 1/3 of the people in the waiting area bolted for the train. It was sheer pandemonium and I'd venture to say it was close to the population of one Irish county. The Irishman has done this train before and it's apparently 5 hrs long so they were all rushing for the good seats. Insert disparaging Irish jokes of your choosing here.

9:01: Platform announced for our train to Liverpool and we join our own (albeit) smaller scrum. Thank god we have seats.

9:17: Delayed - we're waiting for train crew (!) - can't this thing drive itself?

9:25: Our flight to Belfast is already delayed - eff. It's only 10 minutes, but still. Eff.

9:30: Crying baby in our carriage. WE HAVEN'T EVEN LEFT LONDON YET.

9:38: And we're off!! Only 21 minutes late!

9:41: Shit, where did that sun come from? I didn't pack my shades.

9:43: Ok, I'm signing off to finish knitting The Irishman's mother's Christmas present. More soon.

10:21: Sheep in snow-covered fields! How cute! I wonder if their wool will be denser after this winter?

10:23: The Irishman and I plan to sled in Dublin #silverlining

10:48: Crap I forgot my yarn needle, and can't finish making up. #christmasfail

11:17: The Irishman's brother just called. Apparently the roads in both Northern Ireland (NI) and Republic of Ireland (RoI) are the worst they've been all week. OMG what if we get stuck in Belfast?!

11:28: Flight check - still only 10 minute delay. We are 20 minutes from Liverpool, so more when we get to the airport.

11:55: Our flight delay was reversed! Things are looking up, on this side of the Irish Sea at least.

12:04: In a taxi to John Lennon Airport. Our taxi driver decorated his cab for Christmas, and rewarded me with a proper Liverpudlian accent. Check!

13:15: We got to the airport and our scouser cabbie ripped us off by claiming he didn't have change. Hmph. I guess I can chalk it up to an authentic Liverpudlian experience.. But now we've checked in, made it through security, and about to tuck into some surprisingly appetizing Subway sandwiches. Reports from Ireland are comforting - the roads look ok. Fingers are still crossed though.

13:58: To commemorate our trip up here, I just purchased a yellow submarine magnet for my collection.

14:06: We are at the gate. No plane yet, but a long line of Irish people are waiting expectantly.

14:15: Good news - our plane is here! Bad news - I count at least half dozen babies in the waiting area and many of them are crying. At once.

14:34: ON THE PLANE!!!!

14:46: About to take off. Irish brother 10 miles from Belfast airport. I'm signing off for now, will update this when we've arrived... Wherever that may be!

15:44: We just landed in Belfast. It is -5 deg C and everything is covered in snow. The Irishman calculated that this flight cost us £3 per minute. I can't think about that - I need to pee.

16:01: Checked bag claimed and we are off. I'll check back in to let you all know that we got to Dublin okay. Until then, start making merry with your families - wherever you are!

Epilogue: We made it to Dublin last night around 7:30... Greeted with hugs and wine, my favorites. I'm signing off now and hope you all have a very Merry Christmas!! xx


  1. Glad to see the weather didn't prohibit you from going home. A lot of my friends were delayed a few days on their flights back to Canada. I was fine coming from Grenoble (France) to Gatwick, but the flight the previous day had been cancelled. I don't see what all the fuss was about.

    Do you have a feature on your blog that allows me to sign up for email updates when you post?

  2. Hey, thanks for the warm thoughts. It was pretty crazy out there with travel but we got there in the end. In terms of subscribing, you can do it a few ways: you can subscribe to RSS feeds if you use Google Reader or another reader program. I'm not sure how to tell you how to get email updates but I'll look into it for you!