Day 8 – 19/9/23

Going home day….

0645 alarm, then down to breakfast for the last time. Absolutely glorious weather. Bugger.

The coach taking us to Milan Malpensa Airport turned up at around 0820 and we were soon bowling down the motorway towards Milan.

We took a detour as there were reports of heavy traffic further down the motorway, but the journey time was little more than an hour.

Speedy Boarding was enabled and our bags went through with little difficulty.

Security, for once, was a doddle. All our stuff was just loaded into the one tray. Jean had disposed of her water, but I had some left, which I was prepared to sacrifice. To my astonishment and to Jean’s chagrin, it was allowed through. Five minutes later, we were free.

We had nearly two hours to kill at this point, so a lot of waiting around and sitting on our backsides. We purchased a coffee and a sandwich for the flight.

Eventually the flight was called and we were fairly quickly through the gate. Then more waiting around.

Eventually we were released to board the plane. When we got to our seats, I was relieved to see that the extra legroom seats I’d pre-booked really did provide extra legroom.

The flight took off a mere 20 minutes late and was very smooth.

Usual long walk at Gatwick, and I had my usual problem at Passport Control. The chip in my passport no longer works, so the scanners don’t recognise me. I have to go and see a human. This took at least half an hour – as normal, they were very short-staffed.

Once through, we collected our bags off the carousel almost immediately, then went hunting for the car at the valet parking area. Found it without too much difficulty, and got through the first barrier. However, the second flagged up some error or other, and I had to press the button for assistance. Finally, the barrier opened and we were on our way.

I’ve had worse journeys on the M25/M1, but it took us longer to get home than it did to fly from Milan to Gatwick. Just loads of heavy traffic.

Finally got there to find the house still standing and the usual piles of post, one item of which confirmed the date of my replacement knee surgery. 4th October, since you ask.

So there we are. My final post will be our impressions of the trip and our conclusions.

Meanwhile, unpacking and washing are the order of the day. These things are important, you know!

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