Two hours later.
Oh! She's moving! She's awake--no, she's just moved her head. I do hope this won't cause irrevisible liver damage.
After another hour, she finally wakes up, thankfully around the time when passing out is beginning to seem like a good idea. I don't drink anything for the rest of the flight, for fear that she'll go back to sleep...
A warning for anybody attempting to enter the US through Raleigh/Durham airport: add about two hours to your arrival time. This should cover the amount of time you'll spend trying to get out of the airport. The gauntlet is as follows:
- Firstly, you'll come off the plane, and start queuing to get past the Customs inspectors (who seem quite cheery today).
- Then, you head to baggage claim. Everything is going okay so far. You get your bags, and queue to hand in your Customs form. Someone will cut in front of you, but you won't mind too much, because you just know he's going to get pulled aside by the officials.
- Then you get in another queue. This is baggage re-checking. Yes, you put your suitcases onto another conveyor belt, and you're told you'll get them back later.
- Then you have to pass through a metal detector. Be advised - they've turned the sensitivity up to 11. This means that belts, shoes, safety pins, old KitKat wrappers, just about anything will set off the alarm.
- Then you suddenly find yourself in the main airport terminal, and you understand why they do all this. Arrivals and departures are not segregated, so 'things' could be planted fairly easily (thinking about it, I wasn't entirely truthful in Gatwick this morning; who knows what Bonnie put in that envelope?). I suppose it's possible that the airport was originally designed for internal flights, and international flights were something of an afterthought.
- Now you find your way to the other baggage reclaim station, and wait by the Fort Worth carousel (where else would you find the Gatwick luggage?). Eventually, your bags come around, and you can finally leave the airport.
The bus trip home was a little crowded; normally with the TTA buses, three people in a bus at the same time is busy, but tonight every seat was occupied. Plus all the bags. It was quite cosy. Haven't seen much of Chapel Hill yet, as it was dark when I got back.
Anyone want to lay odds as to whether I can make it to the end of The Daily Show? I think I stand a chance...