Saturday, 31 October 2009

The Pitfalls of Travel

The journey home today proved to be one of fits and starts, but in the end I made it. We were up at the prescribed hour, 04-00, and not surprisingly Ille had the breakfast and coffee ready in super quick time. The taxi also arrive on the dot of 5a.m. and by 05-30 we had said our good-byes and I was clear of security. The small turbo prop job taking us the 20minute hope to Helsinki was also prompt, but that was when we hit the first snag. The Pilot reported he had an indication of failure on his equipment, and had to head back to the stand but before arrival things got back to normal. An uneventful flight, transfer and loading into the Airbus 320 that was to bring us back to Heathrow and Herkko had done particularly well as I was in the front row of toe-rag class (row 6) and in an aisle seat, almost poll position you might say! Perfect you may think, but we were put on hold for 15 minutes, circling above Staines, then when we got to the 'stand' the damned 'air bridge' failed. So, we now had to disembark from the aft steps meaning those who might have got off first, myself included, now got off last. It was rapidly approaching 10.00 the time of my National Express and it seemed like 10,000 people at passport control, but in the end I made it with 5 minutes to spare. The driver was quick away, and after his safety announcement, let it be known that there had been a bad accident on the M3 and he would be taking an alternative route via Farnborough. This also didn't come to pass as the matrix had been cleared so we continued down the Motorway, only to find there had been another more recent crash which we got a grandstand view of and was not a pretty picture. However, we got to Poole on time, where I decided to hasten the last part of the journey by getting the train. ELEVEN QUID! Yes £11 Poole to Weymouth, makes you wonder why people aren't using the trains. Anyway, I was back on familiar soil, and after a lamb shoulder in JD's it was home. An early night for this lad, in the hope that predicted rain keeps at bay and I get some birding in tomorrow. So, till then, here are a few more photies from yesterday.

Ille with the roast nut girls

Looks like I've got to take 2 of them to dinner

Josephine's Chocolate Cafe

Look at that lump of 'Porter' chocolate cake!!

A drop more water with I think

Here are some of the outstanding photographs from Thursday when, in quite cold conditions, we walked along the sea wall overlooking the Gulf of Finland. Later we warmed up with soup in a Mexican restaurant.

Tallinn Old City

Male Goldeneye
Male Wigeon
Male Wigeon probably juvenile moulting

2 of the ferries that ply between Tallinn and Helsinki

Male Mallard