||[Jun. 29th, 2003|12:36 pm]
Early start! I set the alarm for 4:15 AM but rolled over and it was gone 5 when I woke again. I had to rush to get everything ready and forgot a few things - fortunately nothing I can't survive without (nail scissors, sun glasses, jars of marmalade and a fruit cake) The taxi arrived promptly and took me to Southampton station where the train was waiting. The ticket office wasn't open but the guard on the train sorted out a ticket for me - he didn't know about the special "Saver Fare" I wanted but trusted me by charging me what I said the fare was! Then I had a 2 hour train ride and started on the new Harry Potter book. Had to change trains once, just before Gatwick airport, which I didn't have to do when I caught that train before ... guess the timetable has been rearranged for the convenience of the train companies rather than me.
At Gatwick I caught the shuttle train to the north terminal, joined the queue to check in and got my huge case checked in. It was 22.8 kilo, slightly over the limit I think but no one seemed to be worried about that. They were trying to get people to take later flights and would give you 200 "Delta Dollars" to change - I'll have to leave my plans flexible next time to see if I can make some money out of them ... or at least get some cheaper flights next time I come out to the States.
Having checked in I then tried to sort out posting my sponsor money for the London Marathon to the charity - Macmillan Cancer Relief. I had already got the envelope addressed and sealed but needed to get it weighed to find out how much to pay for the stamps. After hunting around for a while I found an information person and got directed back to the south terminal for a Post Office (which didn't open 'till 9 AM but that wasn't too long a wait)
After that it was back to the North terminal (took some pics from the train), Garfunkles for breakfast (eggs, bacon, sausage, mushrooms, beans and toast, orange juice and coffee), through the security checks, find some cheap memory cards for the camera so I bought two 128 M cards. Hanging around for a while waiting for the flight then down the ramp and ... pulled for a baggage check! Oh well it's their job and they were friendly ... well apart from the guy who wanted to confiscate my chocolate bars (as a joke).
Oh, breakfast time - I'll have to finish this later.