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Heathrow Hodgepodge

Necessary Nuisance

View 2015 Costa Rica (plus 1996 and 2008) & 2016 Tulip Cruise on greatgrandmaR's travel map.

They gave us breakfast on the plane - about 5 am our time. Juice, and either yogurt or fruit and pastries.


We flew in over the fields and streams (and houses and churches) of England,

and arrived at Heathrow early - 10:05. The wheelchair person at the gate tried to get me to walk up the gangway - not going to happen. So she pushed me to the holding area, and then we got another wheelchair person who took us to the Lounge.
But first we had to go through security again - we had to dump out all our water (which we just got on the plane and wasn't even open). This time they picked Bob's carry-on to do an extra special inspection - scrutinized his electric razor and the charging stuff for the scooter and also of course the scooter battery and the scooter. We did not get out of there until 11:30. Very little time in the lounge

although I did use the bathroom-
there is free wi-fi but it needs a password. And as before, we got a wheelchair out of there at the last minute

This time they made Bob gate check the scooter. We were on the plane by 12:55 (for a 13:10 departure) - this was a full plane.
They gave us a light lunch which consisted of a somewhat nasty salad with a three pie shaped wedges of cheese - reminiscent of a plowman's lunch which I have never cared for, but the roll was good.


Posted by greatgrandmaR 11:38 Archived in England Tagged airport scooter Comments (0)

Broken by British Airways - April 30

Back through Heathrow

View 2015 Costa Rica (plus 1996 and 2008) & 2016 Tulip Cruise on greatgrandmaR's travel map.



We got a wheelchair to the 'assistance area' and after a bit another wheelchair (with the same guide as before)
Same wheelchair guy

Same wheelchair guy

to take us through security again (again they gave Bob's bag an special inspection) and to the lounge.

Gate check tag

Gate check tag

The scooter was not given back to us at the plane the way I thought it would be. Instead (as we found out later), it was taken off the plane and sent to baggage claim, because it was Gate Checked but it was just Gate Checked to Heathrow. I do not know why it was not given back to us as it should have been. I suspect they didn't want to admit that they had damaged it.

Our gate was not on the board as we have several hours to wait. We eventually ended up in the lounge. I used the computer for awhile, and also went to the bathroom. Bob got me some juice, and he got himself some cookies.

Although I asked to leave the lounge at 3:00, they did not even start moving us until 3:30, and then when they were to transfer us to a cart, they couldn't open the back door on the cart for us to sit there. So the little Indian lady with us got into the cart, and Bob walked with a man pushing me in a wheelchair to gate A10. This proved to be a gate where we had to take a bus to get to the plane. They asked me if I could climb steps and I said I could if I had to and they decided that I should not have to and put us in a lift van with several other people
Getting to the plane - Heathrow

Getting to the plane - Heathrow

So we got on the airplane. This time we had center seats - neither of us had a window. I just didn't take any photos. A man came and said that the scooter had been checked through. But that was just our luggage which was checked through. The flight attendant came to me about an hour before we landed and said that the scooter was still at Heathrow. He was most upset about it (more than I was). They say that the scooter will be on tomorrow's plane and will be driven down to us in Leonardtown. They also wanted to loan us a wheelchair, but I really don't need a wheelchair at home. So the Country Inn & Suites came and got us - without a scooter. Batteries, but no scooter.
Waiting for pickup at BWI

Waiting for pickup at BWI

Beds in the Country Inn and Suites

Beds in the Country Inn and Suites

We drove home on Sunday after breakfast,
Bridge to home

Bridge to home

and looked at the mail and had dinner. About 10 they called from the airport and were going to bring the scooter down that night, but I said Monday morning would be better as it would have been midnight before they got here.

So it came Monday morning, and they had BROKEN THE CONTROL HEAD off of it. Actually two tiny Phillips head screws had been removed and the head taken off (breaking the electrical connection) and then put back. I don't have any photos of the broken scooter

The airline (BA) wanted me to give them an estimate on letterhead of the price to fix. But there were no people down in the country who could fix it who had letterhead to write a price on. So Bob just fixed it himself

How many of the Goals for the trip did I accomplish?

  • Do a canal tour of Amsterdam with Bob. Not completely satisfactory so Half Done
  • Revisit Volendam Originally the ship was to dock at Volendam and it did not - the changed schedule really short cutted the visit - Goal Not Done.
  • Revisit Antwerp (railroad station, Rubens house and the zoo) I got to see part of Rubens house and took photos of the railway station like my father did, so it was Checked.
  • Show Kinderdjik to Bob Bob was under the weather and the boat did not dock close to Kinderdjik like it was scheduled to do. Not Done
  • See the tulips in Keukenhof - Checked
  • Revisit the Alkmaar cheese market - Checked

And after I got home, I found the DVD that my sister made of the movies that my dad took of the Cheese Market
Alkmaar 1950 https://youtu.be/aFPUVSoOI3Q
and made it into a YouTube video and gave it to the Cheese Museum.


Our next trip was in June 2016 Family Reunion in Georgia

Posted by greatgrandmaR 08:20 Archived in England Comments (0)

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