It may not surprise some that this was not the first time that I had missed a flight. I've often found myself in situations where I've hit the snooze button on my alarm and missed the bus or even simply forgotten to bring my passport with me to the airport. In my defence, if I was to compare the amount of flights that I've missed to the amount of flights that I've successfully boarded, it isn't really that bad. (Well I don't think it is anyway, you may think otherwise) I've regularly flown every year from the age of about four or five, mainly to visit my dad. I flew from Dublin to South Africa on my own at the age of twelve and yet this time around, at twenty three I managed to mess up a flight to Milan.
So the original plan was to surprise my girlfriend Áine with a trip to Italy. Everything started off really well, I told her the night before that we were going, I packed my bags, I got up on time, I caught my 3:35am bus, I arrived an hour before my flight and I even remembered my passport. What's that you say? Kymann, how on earth was it possible for you to miss your flight? Oh...well...let me explain. I arrive at the gate on time, I see a gigantic queue of people boarding for the 6:15am flight to Bergamo, Milan. From what I could see it looked like a "fully booked flight" kind of queue. In my head it would have taken about 10 minutes to board everyone. This was when the genius that is Kymann Power decided it would be a good idea to grab a quick sandwich for breakfast before boarding. That way he won't get caught having to pay for Ryanair's overly priced selection of underwhelming food. Little did I know. I ran to the nearest shop, a stones throw away from the gate. It took me about 3 or 4 minutes to get back to the gate...
Doors closed. Not one person at the gate boarding for the 6:15am flight to Milan. I looked at my watch and the time was 6am. Although the stupidity was entirely on my part, not once did a Ryanair representative call out my name over the intercom which killed me that little bit more inside. On top of that I looked through the pane of glass that separated myself from the aircraft. This was when I could see two queues of people ever so slowly boarding the plane. As they boarded the aircraft it seemed as though everyone was laughing, smiling and conversing with one another about how fantastic their trip to Milan was going to be. It almost felt like everyone was in on a plan to leave me behind. Meanwhile, I continued to look on with what I would call, the most expensive sandwich that I have ever purchased. I then managed to catch the attention of another airport employee who politely ran down to see if he could do anything. He came back. "Nothing I can do, sorry."
I proceeded to exit the departures area and arrived at the Ryanair customer service desk to discover it would cost me another €100 to wait twelve hours to board the next flight to Bergamo, Milan. I guess it wasn't too bad since it was €264 when I checked prices online. Nonetheless, it was still a €100 sandwich.
I called Áine and told her the whole story, she thought this was part of the surprise. When she arrived in Milan she soon realised it wasn't.
In the meantime, I waited, and waited, and waited, until twelve hours had passed and it was time to board my second flight to Bergamo. I boarded at 6pm, everything going fine, the flight was due to last two and a half hours. Then as we approached Milan, I looked through the window and saw this...
A gigantic cloud emitting thunder and lightning. Directly beneath it? Bergamo airport. Forty five minutes later, we were then informed that Bergamo airport would no longer be permitting any aircraft to land until the following morning. We then proceeded to land in Malpensa airport, an hour outside of Milan. This was when I thought "Surely things can't get any worse." But, there's more.
As all of these events unfolded, Áine was waiting the entire day in the hotel unaware that my flight had been diverted. The trip was slowly but surely becoming one of the worst surprise trips ever. As soon as I got off of the plane I went straight to the Terravision bus office to see if I could change my prebooked ticket. "No sorry. You'll have to buy a new one." At this stage I just wanted to get to the hotel, so I stormed straight to the express train which would get me to Milan quicker. I arrived at Milano Centrale. I got off of the train, and discovered... Take it away there Morgan...
My brand new Sony camera was gone. This was a new camera that I had purchased only a week earlier, specifically for going away on this trip. I sprinted back onto the train and a cleaner started shouting at me in Italian, when I soon realised that I had left the camera back at the airport. The time was approximately 11:40pm. There were no more trains or buses back to the airport. I wanted to cry. The entire day just went against me. I proceeded to the hotel to a confused girlfriend who could not comprehend the events of the day.
What was supposed to be one of the most enjoyable days to experience turned into 20 hours of hell. I've had people ask me weather the sandwich tasted nice. The answer is, no. It did not. I know not to make the same mistake again. Well, more than likely I'll miss another.
THANKFULLY THOUGH! The next morning I got my camera back and had one of the best holidays yet!
*** Don't buy sandwiches at the airport when your flight is boarding or you'll end up looking like this. ***
Take it easy.