We take our seats on the soon-to-be-Paris-bound Jet2 plane, patiently parked on the tarmac of Leeds Bradford airport.
I am feeling a strange little pang. It is the first time I have left Tadpole in the mother country. She will be holidaying with mum and dad for the last week of the childminder’s vacation, and I will retrieve her next weekend. The Lover and I took the opportunity to conduct a a grand “meet the parents” tour of Yorkshire.
The pilot makes an announcement. “We are currently delayed, as two passengers have checked luggage onto this flight but have failed to put in an appearance at the boarding gate. We apologise for this delay, and will be setting off just as soon as their baggage has been removed from the hold.”
I sigh, mutter something grumpy but inaudible and glance at my watch. The only good thing about arriving in Paris a little later than expected is that I will probably not be subjected to the Grand Prix on TF1.
I reach for the Sudoku book, pen and pencil. I’m sad to say that, as with most things (blogging included), I have come to it unfashionably late. I completed my first puzzle in the Yorkshire Evening Press at 1 o’clock on Friday morning. By Saturday afternoon I was addicted and have already had several vivid dreams involving rows of numbers. Particularly 9’s, for some reason.
Time passes, without me noticing, so absorbed am I muttering “it can’t be a 4, a 7 or a 9,” or something similarly fascinating, under my breath, and then the pilot takes to the PA system once more.
“We have a new development, Ladies and Gentlemen,” he says, clearly enjoying himself. “The two missing passengers have been located and rather than remove their baggage, we will be allowing them to join us on board.”
I roll my eyes at my Lover, and we agree that we would not like to be in their shoes when they finally board the plane and feel the weight of a hundred or more Paddington stares. The pilot, however, has not yet finished his speech:
“I think you should all give them a hearty round of applause to show how much you appreciate them finally deciding to join us!”
Grinning at this somewhat unexpected suggestion, I put down my puzzle and watch the doors. Will it be another dim-looking perma-tanned couple, he with a rather too tight T-shirt, her with a Burberry handbag? Or perhaps a couple of old dears who are a little hard of hearing?
Instead I see a reasonably attractive (if you like the boy band look, which I don’t) young man and his very slinky black girlfriend. She looks flushed, and slightly dishevelled. He looks exceedingly pleased with himself.
The Lover and I give each other a conspiratorial look. “They were so shagging in the toilets,” I exclaim. Probably too loudly.
At first, no-one claps. But after a few seconds of silence, someone does start to applaud, a few rows behind us, and is joined by other, hesitant pairs of hands.
The young man shoots his companion a glance, then breaks into a wide grin and takes a theatrical bow, to rapturous applause.
I join in, unsure as to why I am enthusiastically congratulating a complete stranger on his sexual prowess (well, they must have been out of earshot of the tannoys for a good half hour) and ability to seduce such a fine looking lady. After all, these people have made me late.
Late for the Grand Prix.
I clap with renewed enthusiasm.
petite vs France Telecom
I feel I ought to share a small personal victory with you. Following the post below re France Telecom, I wrote a strongly worded letter and received a reply informing me that a full refund of € 55 would be credited to my account to “regularise the situation”.
C’est gagné (as Dora the Explorer would say)!