Thursday, 24 January 2008

Alright Now

Everybody say it with me: aaaaaaaaaaaah. Now exhale deeply, and relax. I can promise that reading my blog will no longer be an exercise in tension building (at least, until the next travel drama, because you know I am cursed).

I have my emergency travel certificate in hand, the airline is changing Shoes' name to the correct order (at a cost of £200 to me, but never mind), and we are both flying home tomorrow for what is now no longer a holiday, but a journey to touch base with the people we used to be before stress and panic turned us into vacant zombies. I imagine you might be nearly as relieved as I am!

Although I'm not completely clear of the potential for more drama - I still need to organise my passport in 3 weeks when I get home - it certainly seems like the worst is over (touch wood - no, hug a tree!). Even the fact that the last two weeks have cost us an extra £1000 in flight changes, re-issuing travel documents and replacing everything I lost, it can't dampen our spirits (ok, not too much anyway). I think we hold the record for the world's most expensive trip home. Although, to be fair, some people actually miss their flights and have to buy brand new tickets - but that would cost the same as what we've had to fork out. I suppose it could always be worse....Shoes' passport could have been in my bag too!

I am finally starting to unwind this nauseating knot of dread in my stomach, and relax my shoulders enough to sit up straight, instead of hunched over in anticipation of the next violent blow.

Things I have learnt in the last two weeks:

1. Never let your passport leave the house unless you are going to the airport
2. If you need to transfer money home, feck the activating of another online account to get free transfers and good rates - just use your regular one and pay the £7 charge
3. Do not go to a pub and NOT get drunk - this is an invitation for bad things to happen because you are going against tradition
4. Marry a British citizen (or anyone else with an EU passport) and ditch your SA passport because....
5. SA passports are worth less than the Zimbabwean dollar, and harder to obtain than the Kruger Rand
6. When in doubt, cry. Bucketloads. With gigantic heaving sobs. If this does not get you special treatment, rest assured that nothing else will
7. Embassy people can be nice. Sometimes.
8. There is always someone at the Embassy with a worse story than you, and you will hate them as they will take the attention away from your catastrophe
9. If there's a problem with your boyfriend's ticket, tell him. If you don't, it will result in much ranting and shouting and errant blame-placing.
10. Thabo Mbeki's fraudulent government has personally seen to it that getting home from the UK after losing your passport is like trying to bring down the Third Reich - everyone runs around in circles making a huge flap, but it takes a really long time before anything constructive is done

And with those important life lessons learnt, I shall sit back and prepare for a day of dreaming about Cape Town, and how I'm going to decide between my red and pink bikinis for my first day on the beach.


phillygirl said...

Lopz, your relief is palpable :) Go and enjoy your more-well-deserved-than-most holiday!

sweetass RSA said...

thank God... enjoy your holiday!!!

Sheena Gates said...

Jeez, I'm so relieved for you!

Have fun, hunny!