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Suomi Je Suis’s Travel Diary

Monday, 01 Dec 2008

Location: Australia

MapG'Day,

I've just returned from the land down under, finally achieving my long-term dream of going there. I learnt many things over the course of the last few weeks, but perhaps the most important was that the baggage handlers at Heathrow airport are about the most incompetent on the planet.

We arrived in Sydney at about 8pm local time after 32 hours of travelling, only to find that our luggage hadn't followed us, nor was there any record of its whereabouts. It only took them 3 days to locate it and return it to us-quite astonishing since the bags were labelled and you would expect these people to have seem luggage before. By the time we got them i had been to the same shopping centre 3 times to keep buying new clothes-One of the women who worked there must've assumed i didn't own any underwear because i was her best customer. On the up side, Qantas gave us some cash as compensation.

On the way home, we encountered the most bizarre trip of all. Firstly, we were held up in Sydney for over an hour due to a drunk man who had to be removed by the police-Typically Australian but very annoying. Then there was a thunder storm that cost another hour. After finally leaving Sydney, we were supposed to fly to Bangkok (Thailand) but we were unable to do so because of civil unrest, so we were instead diverted to Singapore. This part of the trip took about 9 hours.

Then we left Singapore and flew towards London, but unfortunately we had to make an emergency landing in Frankfurt because a female passenger had a heart attack. After 2 hours of medical attention, the woman died on the plane, and a few hundred people witnessed her body being placed into a hearse. Fortunately by this point i hadn't slept for 2 days so it didn't really sink in.

We finally left towards London (4 hours late) and naturally missed the connecting flight back to Helsinki because of the delay. We were placed on the next flight and landed in Helsinki after approximately 36 hours of travelling (and about 1 hour of sleeping). We then waited for the luggage to be returned, only to find that they had managed to lose it again. Of course by this time we had missed the next bus home.

Alas, we finally got home and the luggage has now been returned, so all is well. As for the holiday, the last 2 weeks were among the most memorable of my life. I saw crocs, koalas, the Great Barrier Reef and the almighty outback amongst other things.

I will definitely be going back in the future, but if at all possible, i will give Heathrow a swerve.

Here is a sample of my holiday snaps: http://www.facebook.com/album.php?aid=182055&l=...