My drive to Rockhampton was uneventful, unless you count trying to stay awake, and getting frustrated by being stuck behind two long road trains. Once I reached the Rocky Airport, I was delighted to have the lovely ladies of QANTAS waive my luggage fees. They assured me that I’d be charged for them in Brisbane, so they let me by. So nice of them!
A friend of mine came to see me off and we went to the Coffee Club for dinner, sharing some memories, and chatting up engagements and soon-to-be weddings (hers). Good times. Though I insisted she didn’t have to, she stayed until I went through the gate to board my plane, which was really great. Thanks, Rachel!
My plane felt positively roomy compared to some QANTAS planes I’ve flown on, so I was able to enjoy my comfortable flight to Brisbane. Of course, I was a little alarmed when they served a small meal, and the palm-sized “sandwich” was listed as having wasabi mayonnaise in it. However, it only had just the slightest tang of wasabi, nothing too spicy for me.
I knew that the fun part would arrive in Brisbane, because I would have to pick up all my luggage, and transfer it over to the international terminal. I had no idea HOW fun it would be, though.
Renting a cart (trolley) to put my luggage on, I found that these carts were slightly smaller than the ones in Rocky, so my suitcases were even more awkwardly placed than before. Then, I had no idea where to go, because the signs weren’t very clear. I finally noticed the AirTrain sign which said it was leaving in 23 minutes, and it would stop at the international terminal. Great, so how to get to the AirTrain?
I went outside, and found the escalator, which actually had room for my trolley, and didn’t roll backwards when I got on it. I figured I’d be crushed, if it did. Steadily, up I went. To find another escalator, and lots of cool looking bright blue lights around the escalator, but I was too occupied to take pictures. Especially when I saw a sign that said the 10pm train was the last one for the night. Heaven forbid I have to find another way to the other terminal!
I pushed the cart onto the escalator, and the accompanying bump caused three suitcases and my laptop bag to fall onto the escalator. As I reached for them, I realized that my cart wasn’t as steady on this one, and was about to roll back downhill. Another guy wasn’t too far behind me, and came running to stop the cart before it could go anywhere. He hung onto the cart the whole way up, while I replaced one suitcase, put my laptop bag on my back, and pulled my heaviest suitcase upright.
Thanking him profusely, at the top, I put the big case back on top, and headed for the ticket booth. The guy working there saw me coming, sold me a ticket, and then came around to push the cart for me. He said the carts couldn’t go on the train, so he would call ahead for someone to meet me there. In addition, he pushed it all the way to the end of the platform, so I’d be right by the elevator (lift) when I arrived. Meanwhile, the train wouldn’t leave for 15 minutes, so I was able to collect myself by collapsing on the seat. Don’t worry, I thanked that guy, too. Actually, I could’ve kissed him, I was so grateful… but I didn’t. : )
Arriving at the next stop, the lady helped me get the big case back on top of my other bags, again, and then I had to go up one elevator, and then go down a RAMP. I had visions of the cases toppling down again, so I turned the cart around and backed down the whole way. You know, about the length of a driveway or two, I backed it the whole way. It’s good for the legs, too. And for my mental well-being.
One more elevator, and here I was, looking for Korean Airlines. Unfortunately, they don’t open until sometime in the morning. So, I’m parked on a couch, with all my luggage around me, and hoping I’ll find someone kind enough to watch my stuff while I go use the restroom, later. Don’t worry, I was smart enough to stop at the toilets before getting my luggage. But it’s about 11pm, and my flight doesn’t leave until 8:30am, or thereabouts.
Whatever happens between now and then, once I’m on my plane, I’ll be in the air for 9 hours, land in Seoul, South Korea, and then have 1.5 hrs until my next flight. Which should last for about 14 hours, if I’ve calculated correctly. It’ll be 9am in Emerald, when I land in Atlanta, GA. And there you have it, my excitement for the evening.
Maybe, after sitting in the airport all night, I’ll be able to sleep through my whole flight to South Korea. That would be pretty sweet, wouldn’t you say? See you on the American side of the Pacific Ocean!