Some last minute packing for Scapa Flow forced me to switch suitcases. The zipper on my big suitcase broke completely and I was going to have to split up into multiple smaller bags. Luckily I had a friend who let me borrow one of their large suitcases. Problem solved. I am still bringing the same amount of checked bags but thankfully I have a little more wiggle room for souvenirs and a shitty re-packing job that I usually do. It’s amazing how hard it is to re-pack bags exactly how you packed them in the first place.
Packing for this trip seemed much easier, granted I did start packing a few days in advance. 1 backpack, and a carry-on a rebreather in overhead. Two checked bags with an assortment of regulators, a drysuit, undergarments, camera and strobes, GoPro and video lights, canlight, backup lights, reels, masks, fins, gloves, spare parts, etc. You name it and I probably found a place for it in my bag.
Miraculously this was probably only the second time that TSA didn’t give my rebreather any second glance and I breezed through security without any TSA special treatment aka “heavy petting.” No extra inspections! Fantastic. Atlanta and Houston should take cue and learn from Boston TSA agents.
I got to the airport in plenty of time and managed to have a couple beers in Terminal E. My Facebook check-in revealed that another diver, Richie K. was also at Logan waiting for his flight to London and then to Malta. Small world indeed. I “managed” to sneak into the airport lounge he was waiting in and had a couple beers with him to pass the time before my flight. We had a nice chat about scallop diving, wrecks and rebreathers.
A slight misread on my ticket meant that instead of looking at the boarding time I was actually looking at the closing time for my gate. Oops. Thankfully no issues, they were still boarding but I was pretty much last person (ok..Not going to lie. I was the last person on the flight.) In full movie style and fashion I was last one to board the plane before they closed the gate. ‘Love Actually’ aint got nothing on me.
I may not be traveling in style in business or first class but I did manage to secure an entire row to myself. Funny when I looked at my original ticket only middle aisle seats were available. This should make the flight a bit more tolerable.
I finally made it it to London around 7:30am in morning, just in time to meet up with my dive buddy for the week, Scott A. before the flight to Inverness, Scotland. It was a long enough flight to mess up my sleep schedule but not short enough to easily recover from so this should be interesting. We sorted out rental car in Inverness and booked a hotel for the night.
We ate dinner at the Castle Inn Tavern and enjoyed some nice local ales. Proper Fish and Chips as they say too. Ready for bed and it’s only around 8pm. In truth British parlance I’m absolutely knackered. Tomorrow is about a 2.5 hour drive up the highlands of the Scottish coast to Scrabster and then a 1.5 hour ferry ride through the North Sea to Stromness where the real advenure begins