The next person that says to me business travel must be so cool….

…will get an earful from me! There are difficult travel days then there are Hellish travel days. Today is firmly in the Hellish category? The day started at approximately 8:00 a.m. when my stepson brought the wonderful news that the M4 (main East/West motorway from Wales to London) was closed at the Swindon junction, which is the one we use, was closed owing to an earlier accident. So, change of plan, we were supposed to leave the house about 9:00 to be at the airport in plenty of time for my flight, we decided to leave immediately and find an alternate route. My plane was due to depart at 12:50 for Milan. We were listening to local radio for traffic updates. One would say the motorway would reopen shortly and then the next would say they really didn’t know how long it be. It is now 9:30 (1and 1/2 hours after leaving the house), we have finally made it to the junction for the motorway, normally a 15 minute drive! The local radio guy, whom by now I’m extremely sick of, says the traffic is flowing but it has to be diverted through the local services and then back on the road. From where we sat the closure was a short 15 miles up the motorway…another 90 minutes later and we are finally clear of the traffic. In the meantime Pam had to pull over to the shoulder so I could call my office to ask they get me on a later flight. Our 3 year old granddaughter is quietly sitting in her seat like an angel except for the occasional reminder to Nan to “put two hands on the wheel”

Rebooked and heading to Heathrow. I whiz through check in and into security. Out the other side I now face a 2 hour wait for the newly arranged flight to Milan. On the plane, down the taxi way and we stop and stay stopped for the next half hour. Finally the captain announces a vital piece of equipment has failed and attempts to reboot the system have also failed. 10 minutes goes by and he comes over the intercom again, his voice now equally annoying as the local radio guy. He explains that we have to return to the terminal and the engineers will meet us to fix the said computer. It is currently 4:45 GMT and we are waiting for a replacement computer because the engineers attempts to fix the computer has ended in misery and they have now called for brand new computer which they are currently installing. Most likely estimate for our departure is now approximately 5:45. Mr’s Dorst, Hauserman and Long I started having flashbacks to 10 hours on the DFW runway while trying to get to New Orleans!!

As bad as this day has been the poor newlywed couple in my row have just flown in from Mexico (where their flight was 3 hours late) and now they have to endure this. I am beginning to think these are signs from God and we are not meant to get to Milan today.