So today was the day we were travelling to Scotland for the 2016 Edinburgh Marathon Festival.
Everything was planned so that I would finish work and pick up Dani en route before heading to Bedminster to catch the airport bus to get our 8pm flight to arrive in Edinburgh so that I could have a chilled day before the marathon.
The airport bus came on time and I even saw a pupil’s dad on there (who I found out the day before was off to the north of Spain to run a trail race there). As expected for the Friday of a bank holiday weekend, there was traffic but we had plenty of time so all was calm. It also turned out that worse was to come…
Arriving at the airport, we had a 30 minute delay (not bad as the dad’s flight to Spain already had a 2 hour delay). After making the most of the free hand cream samples – always a nice airport treat – we settled down for a coke and waited to board. We were called to our gate by 9 and after ten minutes of waiting, an announcement came!
The captain came into the gate to announce the plane had been struck by lightning on its last flight and the men who had been shining torches at the plane for the last ten minutes were in fact inspecting it to find out where the Lightning exited. Fair enough. We all want to fly on a safe plane. We grabbed a seat on the floor to get comfy but soon they said it could be an hour so kindly suggested we return to the departure lounge to be able to access refreshments. Our dinner plans on arrival in Edinburgh were ruined so we decided on airport food. Not great in the build up to a marathon.
Then announcement #2 came.
This time it was over the tannoy and informed us the flight had been cancelled! Cancelled! With no advice of what to do at 10pm! (Funnily, just as this announcement came through, the Madrid flight were asked to start boarding 4 hours after their expected departure. Lucky them. Sort of).
Confusion raced around the departure lounge and we made our way to the easy jet desk where it was very tense with some trying to get to the race and some to weddings. Luckily, Dani was great in this situation (I will blog about how great she is in more detail soon) and had already checked to see there was no flight the next day we could swap onto but there was a train leaving at 6:45am. We decided that this was the best and the only real viable option. So we took it. £220 pound for 2 tickets in first class and cheaper than standard class. What a deal for a seven hour train. Not so great as it was an extra £120 than we paid for the flight to Edinburgh. But needs must and we will be appealing for more compensation. So we left the airport at 11pm and headed home to get some sort of sleep frustrated at losing a night of our Edinburgh accommodation but happy we had a plan. The planned night of good sleep and waking up whenever on the day before the race was now going to be spent travelling.
Waking up early we started our journey again and got to the station and took our seats for my first trip in first class. Normally I wouldn’t bother with first class but for a journey this long and before a marathon it was ideal (we checked and found the seats would normally be £330 each so we were very smug!).
We made the most of the free tea which came with a shortbread biscuit every time! Perfect pre race food right? It was also nice to have leg room to stretch out in, although I did feel guilty when I wanted to stand up to stretch my legs when people in other parts of the train were probably being forced to stand!
We finally made it to Edinburgh for 2:30 and began our holiday! The flat we found on air bnb was a 25 minute walk from the station and was absolutely brilliant. For £76 a night it came with a kitchen which means we can cook food if we want and a lounge which is great for chilling if the rain comes. It also has a bath which I will be having a nice bath in.. I mean an ice bath! All in all it is much better then a hotel that we would normally choose to stay in for a price close to the cost of this flat.