Swanning about. Airport lounges, convenient car parks and hotel bedrooms.

Posted on November 28, 2011


When I was little I thought people travelling alone were dead glamorous. I would look at them walking purposefully through the airport, suited and booted, carrying their briefcases, bags and trinkets in carrier bags. They’d always be friendly, smile at little children then stride off, like swans, gliding through the airport lounge, focused on the job in hand.

When I grow up, I thought, I will be like that. I suppose to a child, these days, I am. In reality, it’s a whole different story.

Book the flight, oh lord, look at the departure time. How will I get my 10 year old to school before it leaves, and will I be home in time to see him before he goes to bed? Click to pay. Heck, did I book the right day?

Sort out the car parking, only another £10 to park right by the terminal. That means a precious few more minutes at home. I will, at least, be able to make his packed lunch then.

Book the hotel room. Where is the best location, given the 6 meetings in different directions? Plump for one near the airport, it’ll be easier. Sorted.

Pack a bag. Pack the dresses that don’t crease. Something warm and comfy too – I am sure to spend the evening working in my room. Heck, did I pay for luggage?

Are you away again this week Mum? Oh. Promise that Newcastle, Manchester, Wiltshire or wherever will have special match attax and yes, I will bring him back a packet.

Leave it to the last minute to depart for the airport – are you home tonight, Mum? No? That means another kiss and another I love you, then I’m off.

At the airport, check in. Walk to the gate.

See the little girl watching me. Smile, miss my boy. Walk on quickly, focused on the job at hand.

The swan glides through the airport, the little girl doesn’t see the legs paddling frantically below the surface.