John Edward Cooper’s Notes

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Tuesday 24 February 2015

[Monday 23 February 2015]

20:00 (01:00UTC)[i]–13:50 (12:50UTC)[ii] Lima-Madrid (11 hours 50 mins) (LA2706)
15:45 (14:45UTC)
[iii]–17:10[iv] Madrid-Heathrow (2 hours 25 min) (IB3166)[v]
19:33–19:49 Heathrow Term123–London Paddington (Heathrow Express)
20:04–20:19 London Paddington–London Kings Cross (Underground)
20:35–22:22 London Kings Cross–Doncaster (East Coast)
22:45–00:09 Doncaster–Cleethorpes (TransPennine Express)
[i] previous day
[ii] 13:50 according to “Your tour dossier” and the same 12:50UTC (i.e. 13:50) according to
[iii] 15:55 according to “Your tour dossier”; 15:45 according to the e-ticket; the same 14:45UTC (i.e. 15:45 local time) according to
[iv] 17:20 according to “Your tour dossier”; 17:10UTC (i.e. the same 17:10GMT) according to
[v] This second flight is an Airbus A340-300 with a seat arrangement 2–4–2.
[vi] These lines are deleted because we were in time to get earlier trains.

I didn’t record anything about the flights at the time. According to Janet, I slept; but what else I did — movies, etc. — I don’t recall. Janet wrote, of the first flight: “…We got two seats to ourselves; I was in the aisle [seat].… We finally landed in Madrid, then followed some of our party until we went through checks and found our gate. We had drinks, then finally boarded our plane for Heathrow. We were separated… I was put in a block of four seats in the aisle [seat]. There was a bloke in the other aisle seat, so two empty seats in the middle. I found [John], and he got his gear and sat next to me.” From this point, I wrote an account: “When we left the aircraft, there was a bit of walking, then a shuttle train to Immigration, Baggage Claim, etc. This time, at the automated Passport Control, the device recognised me and let me through. Previously, I had to leave the booth and see the official on duty. When we got to Baggage Claim, Norris had already recognised our cases and pulled them off the carousel. We shook his hand, wished him well, and departed. We passed through “Nothing to declare” at Customs, and after a short walk and a descent in a lift, we found a Heathrow Express train waiting. The Underground journey was not without a hitch: we had to get the train to Edgware Road, then change platforms for a Circle Line train to Kings Cross–St. Pancras. And there was no lift that we could find. I was able to carry both cases up the stairs of the footbridge, but going down I needed to carry one at a time. The Circle Line train was quite crowded. Anyway, we got to Kings Cross station well in time for the train before the one I listed in the plan above. I went and bought myself a large Cornish pasty from Upper Crust, and as I sat and ate it, Janet went and got me a coffee from Starbuck’s. She herself had bought a sandwich and a Moroccan-style flatbread wrap at a branch of Boots on the way from St. Pancras to Kings Cross, to eat on the train. I carried the rest of my coffee on to the 20:05 East Coast train when it started boarding. En route, when the catering trolley came by, I bought a 500ml can of Deuchars. The train was on time in Doncaster (21:45), and the connecting TransPennine Express was likewise on time (departed, 22:05). We got off at Grimsby Town (23:09) because of the ease of getting taxis from there. There was a great pile of things posted through the letter-box, including… a letter, evidently from the hospital, which piqued my curiosity too much not to open. It was a Haematology outpatient appointment. Apart from that, we did nothing but drag the cases into the hall, and flop into bed.”


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