I woke up early the next morning, repacked all my stuff, went downstairs and grabbed one final breakfast before my long journey to London. There were probably direct routes to get me to London a lot faster but unfortunately, I had a strict timeline that required me to travel on one very specific day and budget-wise, I wasn’t looking to spend too much excess money on hotels in London when I didn’t need to. Plus, getting the opportunity to spend more time in Dubrovnik verses London definitely was a good enough reason for me to deal with the excessively long flight route that I took to get to London.
When it was time to finally leave my hotel, I called my Uber to the airport and made my way to the Dubrovnik airport. I had a great driver who decided to share with me all sorts of fun tidbits about Dubrovnik like the fact that there is really one major rode that can get you in and out of Dubrovnik. Apparently, during the busy season, sometimes tourists have to leave four to five hours early just to get to the airport because if there are too many people on the road, you’ll be stuck in traffic and there’s no alternate route to the airport. And, if there’s a crash on the main road, you’re in trouble. My driver told me that he’s been stuck in that traffic before and had his passengers miss their flights out of Croatia because of this one road. He also pointed out the homes that are outside of the main city and told me that that’s usually where locals or people who come into Dubrovnik to work during tourist season stay and deal with the commute into the city because otherwise it’s too expensive. I also learned that there is ship wreckage in water that borders Dubrovnik and it’s a great place to do diving excursions for those interested.
I got to the Dubrovnik airport and quickly learned that this airport is probably one of the smaller airports I have ever been to in my life. When I showed up, they hadn’t booked a gate quite yet for the flight and we had to stand in one line waiting to check in. I wasn’t able to do online check in for some reason and had to deal with standing in line with everyone else who had checked luggage. One of the few times, having only carry-on luggage did nothing for me. It turns out the reason why I wasn’t able to check in online is because at some point, I had tried to change my seat on the airplane and didn’t realize that they were trying to charge me. So I went along the process and never paid so I had to go the main desk to pay for the seat I selected. Luckily, since I was confused and didn’t realize what I had done, the main desk person gave me the seat for free. I honestly think it was because she didn’t want to keep me there for too long because there was a giant line waiting to check in for the flights.
After that, I went through security and had some time to kill. I ended up noticing the board with all the flights and saw that they actually post multiple days of flights because there aren’t that many that fly in out and Dubrovnik. If I had left a day earlier, I would have had a direct flight to London. Oh well.
Finally, I boarded my plane started the first leg of my journey. I was heading off to Barcelona for a few hours. Little did I know that this would be one of the more eventual travel days of the entire trip. We took off from Dubrovnik and I had fallen asleep. I woke up to a woman screaming for a doctor and people running frantically up and down the aisle. Apparently, an older man had overheated and thrown up on himself. They managed to cool him down, increased the air conditioning on the plane and got him some water. We landed in Barcelona without any additional issues.
I made my way to a lounge in the airport and hung out there until it was time for my flight to London. Luckily, the lounge allowed me to stay there for my four hour layover so I was able to be pretty comfortable while I waited and get some food while I waited for the last leg of my flight. I got to my gate and realized that I was on a completely full flight and I was about 3 rows from the back of the plane. As someone who gets motion sick, I was not pleased. But things got worse for me, I realized that I was in the middle seat and the weather in London was not great.
We took off from Barcelona and this had to be one of the worst flights of my life. Sitting so far in the back of the plane, in a middle seat, my dramamine wearing off and hitting turbulence from cruising altitude all the way to touch down in Heathrow was the worst combination. Please keep in mind, I am also a contagious vomiter so everything that could have been going wrong for this flight was going wrong. About 45 minutes out from London, the turbulence finally got to people that the lady in the window of my row pulled out the barf bag and people were constantly asking for water and gasping every time we felt a drop. About 15 minutes later, they shut off the bathrooms and that lead to turmoil for some of the small children on the plane who really had to pee so that resulted in angry parents, yelling, children crying and people crowding around my row. As someone who gets motion sick, I’ve found that the more air I can get, the less cramped I feel, the more I can control how I am feeling. At this moment, with the lady next to me on the verge of throwing up, the crowd of angry parents next to me and the sobbing of the child, I was about ready to throw in the towel and pull out my barf bag to see what would happen.
Luckily, it all worked out, the child was able to use the restroom, everyone was seated and we landed in London without any additional issues.
I decided that night to stay at the Heathrow airport because I was going to be taking the National Express to Bristol the next day and it would be so much easier to get to the terminals if I stayed by the hotel. So I walked to my hotel, checked into my room, ordered room service and settled in for the night.
After the journey I had, it was a great way to end my last official night of my two week journey of solo travel. The next day, I would actually get to meet up with friends and have people to hang out.