Woke at 7am by the alarm, which itself alarmed me as I'd changed the tone last night and didn't know what the noise was. Left for the airport in the morning Manchester rain, natch. Check in at the Business Class section was odd. They've implemented further security checks, which is fine, but seemingly just for business class passengers. I asked the lady questioning me what I was doing and where I'd come from why this was, she just ignored me. Once that was done and both my bags had been checked (happens around 75% of the time) we went to the lounge, ordered some breakfast and then me and Brad headed to the shops to get some flight essentials.
We were called for boarding, and me and James headed through, as usual, ahead of everyone else on the team. James, the first passenger through was pulled to the side to be screened, I was told to take the steps down to board the plane. 20 minutes went by, still no James. 40 minutes went by, Fin called. James had tested positive for 'explosives' on his carry on bag. We all immediately knew that meant the pyro powder from last night's show in Liverpool had been detected by the scanners. It's not a normal everyday occurrence I imagine, and I'm guessing though security would have believed James's story, they have to be 100+% sure and cover all the checklists they need to. James ended up missing the flight. This also meant the flight was delayed by 90 minutes, and after an hours delay we all (the team, not all the passengers!) had to go and identify our bags so they could eliminate James's and Joes (Joe stayed with James to arrange another flight). It's fair to say some of the passengers didn't look to happy. The Pilot even announced the whole situation at one point. A very bizarre start to our trip.
Once we were up and away food was served, started with a chef's special entrée dish which was a very nice cold smoked tuna and baby vegetables. That was washed down with a Delta Signature Cocktail. Up next was the roasted chestnut soup and butternut and cashew salad, which was equally as nice, and then I chose the Spanish chicken and vegetables for my main. Of course, no meal is complete without dessert, of which I went for the very 'moorish' hot gingerbread pudding.
Coffee. Edit. Sleep. Read. Land.
Immigration was like no other we've/I've ever had. There was no queue, it lasted, for all of us, about 5 minutes. Usually we wait for around an hour or even more in immigration, it was probably a one off, but I'm thankful for it whatever it was and whatever the chances are it'll happen again! Picked up by the tour bus, I claimed my usual bunk, dropped my bags off and then sat in the back lounge with Con, Brad and Tris (photo below). We watched a Kevin Bridges DVD and then I scooted off to lay down, reading at first before falling asleep till we arrived in Baltimore. It's fair to say we were all tired by this point [930pm local time, 230am UK time], I got my room key and headed to the hotel shop to grab a drink and a yoghurt.
"You look tired young man." Said the little old lady shop owner. "I am very tired actually." I replied "I'm tired too, been a looooong day this one." She spurted back. "I see, what time do you finish?" I mumbled back in my sleepy state. "When I get home."