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Wren loves to England and New York!

Flying is in my blood...
I am at my happiest with my suitcase packed 
and my passports at the ready...
Sunrise on the way to England in March
 Talk about a crazy few weeks, 
I was home with hardly enough time to work out which way is up... 
before I'm off crossing the international date line.
Hey, the good thing is that if you keep going long enough, 
you find extra days in your life and 
there is no time for jetlag!

Firstly there was my Royal Brunei flight 
from Melbourne Australia to London Heathrow...

Leaving Australia takes hours - sorry for the blurred photo!
Ok confession time. In the spirit of being open and transparent, I need to declare that I embarked here on a new adventure. I did ponder whether I should share this with you, for fear of being labelled a right spoilt brat, princess or even Little Wandering Wowser…

Deep breath here goes.

Twenty-eight hours travelling time and counting down…

I was flying
economy from Australia to Europe. 
There we are. I’ve said it. 
And you’re not thinking ‘poor love’… Are you? 
You’re thinking 
‘Welcome to the real world, Wren…’
I can tell. 

With two transit stops in Bandar Seri Begawan and Dubai, that's one massive reality check long flight. I was excited to be back in the land of chilly days, spring showers and snowdrops. It was a whistle stop visit last month to catch up with our family in England, and to wave daughter number one off to  Africa.

All smiles on our Royal Brunei flight from Dubai to London Heathrow
I’ve had a marvellous and lucky life. We left the UK more than twenty years ago, and I’ve now lived in Australia over ten years. I’ve either returned back to Europe with stop overs at exotic destinations en-route, or I was on ‘Home Leave’ sitting up the front, courtesy of a company paid airline ticket.

I come from a family of aviators. The previous generations of men in our family are pilots, happiest in a cockpit flying the plane, whether it is a Spitfire, VC10 or jumbo jet. In fact I seem to remember that our Captains are not that enthusiastic about sitting down the back either, they prefer to be in control!

Flying is in the blood
…a dislike of being down the back, is genetically programmed into me! 

Sorry no entry!
I’ve had a taste of the good life; the express check-in, lovely lounges, priority boarding, cocktails on take-off, celebrity chef meals on board, spa vanity packs… and I can tell you, it’s a sweet taste and hard to give up. 

Hey, don’t get me wrong. I don’t want you to think that I was born with an silver airline spoon in my mouth. I have regularly flown budget! It’s not all been champagne and ‘may I help you with your luggage’. 

I’ve flown Ryan (“You can’t have hand luggage and a handbag’) Air and Aeroflot and who could ever forget Garuda, or more recently China Southern, Jet (I will never, ever, ever fly you again) Airways, or even more adventurously, China Eastern to name but a few.

However the flights that I remember with a warm fuzzy ‘I was born to fly’ nostalgia, are the long haul business class Singapore Airlines, Qantas, British Airways, Cathay Pacific, Thai flights.. C’mon who wouldn’t????

At home in the new Qantas Hong Kong Lounge - April 2014
Of course in those days it wasn’t uncommon for the frequent, frequent flying Executives to be upgraded to First Class. We’re talking the heady days of big bonuses and pre the Global Financial Crisis. Those were the days when business travel was a perk of the job that the whole family enjoyed, not that I ever went First Class but we did enjoy many a flight in Business Class.

Now we’re Aussie locals, see Australia Day when we finally all became Aussie citizens. There is no fat expat contract and certainly no Home Leave to the United Kingdom, we are home! 

So now we’re paying, I’m back where I belong in the down the back, proudly in Row 48 Royal Brunei. The cheapest carrier I could find to the UK with a bargain ticket costing $1600 AUD.

Welcome home Wren!

But wait there's more...

Next there was our Cathay Pacific flight 
from Melbourne Australia to New York, via Hong Kong ...

Yes it's a long way from Australia to America
 but we're off to see daughter number two 
currently studying 
in New York.

Good news! 
Even travelling on the cheapest ticket we could find, 
flying with my husband still brings certain perks! 
DH is whisked off to the land of extra leg room 
and 'can I personally welcome you on board, Sir?'

Now, in the intervening years our little boy 
grew up to be taller than his father, so a deal is struck!
One has the extra leg room to Hong Kong (8 hours 15 mins)
and my husband gets the extra legroom to New York (15 hours)

Me, I get a champagne in the Qantas Lounge 
in Melbourne and Hong Kong
So I'm happy!

Yes please I'll have a champagne! Qantas lounge Melbourne

Well if we thought the Qantas Lounge in Melbourne, was fantastic, we were 
estactic with the new Qantas Lounge in Hong Kong. It had only been open a couple of weeks but what a find. We all had showers, a lovely dinner, free internet and I won't go on, except to say I would have happily stayed there a lot longer!
Looking out from the plane's window over the high rise apartments of Hong Kong
Soon, we were back on board for the remaining 15 hours to New York. Hooray
 we got an extra seat between us and could spread out a bit... You could have a marathon movie session if you really wanted... 

It's a long way to New York!
After 15 hours (and the rest) we're driving through the streets of New York, pinching ourselves at the recognisable road signs, 5th Avenue, Madison Avenue, Times Square, Broadway - I can't wait to show you around!

I hope you have a great week, thank you for stopping by!

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