Saturday, June 3, 2017

First impressions and feeling hot hot hot

British Airways are back flying and queuing up at LHR
It was quite a long flight all things considered as we were delayed on the tarmac for an hour for air traffic control issues with the shear amounts of planes departing. The Dreamliner was lovely to fly in, the staff were very good, but I just happened to get the 4 year little person without parents who like supervise their off spring. So it was a 7 hour yelping and kicking fest from the little chap behind.
Anyway the landed in to Dubai at 4:30am to be told by Capt. Nicholas over the PA system that we were landing into a steamy 34 degrees at that time in the morning.
There were some cheeky little storms below on the flight over Germany
 I was lucky enough though to sit next to a nice Australian chap on his way home to Melbourne with 3 further flights of a similar the one that got us to Dubai ahead of him, so I felt quite lucky getting off of the plane at that point.
Immigration was a breeze, my suitcase was waiting for me and it was a quick skip in a taxi to my hotel.
Now there always comes a point during the night, where its no longer night any more but its the morning. The in-between bit of that is a bit of a weird zone for me, and it always has been, whether it was long party nights in my youth or long fire shouts in the fire service there is always a moment where there mind and body have to go through a conscious switch if you happen to be awake all night. The strange thing for me was this happened exactly as i was dropped at the hotel by the taxi to check in. I couldn't work out if it was last night or this morning and i think i managed to totally confuse the poor chap in reception as I couldn't get my words out or even make any sense.
Fortunately for me, he was in a better state than I was and packed me off to my lovely room here whilst it was still dark at about 5am. I dropped my bags on the floor and thought i would steal a few hours kip to catch up after kicky kickerson the little chap on the plane had kept me up all night.
The strange thing being that as soon as I lay down i wasn't tired anymore and there was no way I was going to sleep, especially when the tannoy outside the hotel started going for the call to prayers........
Yes I forgot to mention its the holy month of Ramadan for all Muslims around the world. This means that life is very different throughout this month particularly when it comes to food and drink as all Muslims have to Fast during daylight hours and that means that all food shops are also closed during that period and there is certainly no drinking alcohol. I have always said when people come to my country of birth, England, that I hope that they would respect all customs, laws and festivities so I think that I would certainly be the pot calling the kettle black if I don't respect their customs, laws and festivities whilst I am a guest in their country.
So its up early before the sun comes up for the biggest breakfast I can mange that going to suffice for the day until sun down.
When the sun came up I checked the weather report and I have posted it below...... all I can say is HOT.
That will be a serious wealthy forecast then
I enjoyed a lovely salmon breakfast and some lovely mint tea. I went off to my room after and unpacked by which point I was pretty tired and managed to drop off for a couple of hours.
Upon waking up I fancied getting out and about and went off to one of the biggest shopping Malls in the World. 
To say its massive is an understatement, I have never seen anything like it. There is even a massive Aquarium with sharks , manta rays and goodness knows what. Its unbelievable how big it is, its like a town.

The massive aquarium including sharks and manta rays in the local shopping mall

The tallest building in the world
 I jumped into a taxi home and stopped off by the training centre where it all starts tomorrow. As I walked through the door I seemed to start smiling...... smiling with a big wide smile

Where its all going to happen
Thoughts for the day:

  • I'm chuffed to bits that i was able to FaceTime with Naomi today
  • There was a japanese man at breakfast who had 7 different plates of food from the buffet, this was not that unusual but the fact that he changed table to each eat plate of food was a little odd and I am struggling to work that one out
  • I'm currently writing this waiting for the sun to go down so that I can go and eat
  • It all starts tomorrow........

Friday, June 2, 2017

We are under starters orders........

Here I am.
The start of a long journey.
St David's train station, Exeter, UK, Europe, Earth.
I have 45 minutes until my train to London Paddington where I'll change trains for Heathrow and then its a long over night flight to Dubai ahead of me.
It might sound soppy but I miss Naomi already. The thought of the next 5 weeks of hard training without my best friend with me, keeping me on the straight and narrow is a tough one.
She makes me smile so much.
The signs of the heightened security are all around us, with more police in the train station.
I made a point of going and saying good morning to each of them with a smile this morning, in the light of all that has happened lately they don't have an easy job and I am sure we all appreciate what they do at moment.
It was quite strange last night finishing up my packing, putting away all of the books, study material and getting ready for the off. Hoping that I have done enough prep for whats ahead. I received a lovely phone call from my new Captain whom I will be flying with on the new aircraft which was really nice. He called to check all is ok and see if I need anything and offer me support if I need it.
I really feel like he's going to be a good guy to fly with and the fact he has an outrageous amount of experience on this aircraft he will be the best person I could imagine to learn this aircraft with.
It is an exciting time, but also I feel really quite nervous. I have been used to change all of my life, with living in Miami, France, traveling through Africa, Australia, Asia and even South America but this for some reason has a feeling that is different, almost of climbing a mountain. My brain is not fantastically clever so it needs to step up over the next month with the volume of information to take in.
Thoughts for the day......

I have been looking at various Video Blogs lately and my friend Steve Faulkner's is brilliant and has made me smile today:

I love having a best friend who is also my wife.

A pretty big week of flying with some centreline hopscotch.....

Hours flown this month(FEB): 33 Landings: 8 Countries visited: 5  Continents visited: 3  Quick iron of the shirt and in th...