Flying to lukla

Awake at 5.15 due to noisy neighbours but nothing new after the 2 weeks of the water pump. Lovely breakfast, loving the choice of everything but dal baht, even had half hour extra due to fog at airport. All excited we get on bus, hi ho, hi ho, it’s off to Everest we go! At airport we realise we are very trusting with our luggage as we head off and leave it on bus and into departures. Very small airport, dirt tracks as paths, queues to get in, first stop security with all bags going through X-ray but not cameras? Then everyone beeps going through body scanner so we get full body rub down from someone we weren’t sure of their gender? There’s been no flights to lukla for two days due to bad weather so backlog! We are delayed again so sit and wait further instructions. Very busy, dirty airport, the start of squat toilets!! but we all seem still excited. Told its 2 hours wait so we head for a drink in restaurant much less busy! We are told to check hand luggage bags for weight, only 5kg allowed so we all take water, books and cameras out, send bags down to pass test then refill them!! A very flawed system this airport has! Also you can take water in but no sharps? Very bizarre having water allowed. When we head through second security poor ex pat forgot that her penknife was in her hand luggage and has it confiscated! Nearly in tears. Free wifi so everyone unsociable!! Do the Facebook check in, few e mails, book hostel for after the trek! Sharing stories of flight crashes in New Zealand and lukla gets me a tad worried on these little airplanes! If the weights wrongly calculated they just tip up! We’ve all got too much hand luggage?? Some annoying American kids sit near us. They play a game called would you rather. Example being: have a glass eye or an eyeball that can be used as a table tennis ball!! I mean what kind of question is that? So loud we all have to move away. Miserable old gits that we are! After 5 hours wait our flight is cancelled and back to the hotel we go! However ex pat does get her penknife back. Every cloud! We were the next flight to go but it’s too windy. Better not to die though! We go for a swim, another last hot shower, nice group meal and early night hoping for better luck tomorrow! A thunderstorm hit in the evening, so glad we didn’t fly as could of hit that? Started our meal outside under the stars then had to run for cover. Was very romantic to start with.
Leave at 5.30 am. Noones hopes are high, Groundhog Day?? Lucky I was in hotel as had a bout of illness in morning, western toilet always better! Packed breakfast is handed to us all and off to airport. Less busy, most of the group leave packed lunch in waiting area as too much or don’t fancy it. Hungry locals scoop it up immediately! straight into departure gates and off to plane on time!! There’s no guarantee you’ll fly until your plane takes off!! It’s a dornier 228, small plane one seat each side of the aisle. Very close to the cockpit.
We took off and it was a bloody bumpy flight. Awesome views but I felt sick! Nearly reached for sick bag. Only our group on flight, attendant gives us sweets, safety feedback form and earplugs. Landing is supposed to be scary but couldn’t see as two of the group were filming! Probably a good thing as I was feeling ill. Shortest runway in the world?
Easy landing and yes we are here!!! Tenzing Hillary Airport!! The adventure really begins!

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