Well the bus soon arrived and in about 10 minutes I was at Clapham Junction Station and waiting for the Gatwick train, while there the Non Stop airport express went through on its way to Victoria station.
A short wait and my train arrived for the 30minute trip.
The train was clean and not many people on board, and we set off to the airport and thats when we ran into the fog.
Oh dear, was my flight going to be delayed,we pressed on.
Well I should not have worried, the nearer we got to Gatwick the better it became and at 9:10 we pulled into the station and it was all clear.
The train arrives at the South Terminal and you catch the shuttle tram over to the North for British Airways
Gatwick airport Police station.
Now arriving at the North Terminal.
Once you get past security you are in the shopping area.
This would lead down to my gate.
Duty free anyone.
Win a car !!!
I headed off to the BA lounge for a coffe and a snack before the 11am take off, the flight was on time.
The last of the fog was clearing away.
My Boeing 777 was one of three parked at the North terminal.
It turned out to be the one closes to me.
The BA lounge was about half full but did seem to have more than its fare share young children who were not best supervised by their parents, I left and boarded the plane as soon as possible.
Now this Boeing 777 is not the usual aircraft used on this route, today we were in a 4 class configuration. I had checked the BA web site and First class was not available yet as the boarding begain the First class cabin filled up, the Club area was also fully booked and so was WT+ and WT, usually it is a 3 class configuration, Club split into two compartments, WT+ and WT. Service throughout the flight was excellent,really a very good crew. All the usually goodies were offered before take off and that we did on time.
After getting to our crussing altitude the first drink service came round and I have a glass of white wine which I stuck to for the whole flight.A delightful Californian Marmesa Vineyards Chardonnay 2005
And the difficult lunch choice, everything sounded good.
Well I had the smoked salmon & crayfish terrine, it was great, BA really do a great seafood starter these days and the flavours were great.
The salad was good but I find the dressing a little to bitter/sharp for my taste.
The wonderful main course, Vineet Bhatia's Chicken Masala, really does hit the spot, great flavours, BA have had this chef on their menu for some time now, if you get the chance please try it.
Good cheese and grapes,
Next thing to mention on this flight was the TV screens, much smaller viewing area on this aircraft than on the usual plane.
Time past quickly, was it the wine, a little nap in the flat bed and the it was time for afternoon tea about 1 hour before landing.
Sandwiches, double Gloucester, honey ham with mustard.
My fav, scones and jam,served warm, really hits the spot.
Now I must save that the last few photos were a bit out of focus due to turbulance, we did take a much more southern track due to a hurricane over the atlantic which was heading up to Canada. the plus side of this is that we arrived 1 hour earlier.
Our approach was to the south and landing was smooth and quick, we got past customs and where out of the terminal very quickly, haven beaten the Virgin flight by over 1 hour.
Tram ride over to the main terminal.
The first thing you see is the Hyatt hotel inside the terminal.
I picked up the rental car and drove the 20 minutes to the hotel.
A nice hotel with a New England theme, very quite for the time of year, perhaps the credit crunch is biting.
Next morning it is off to the parks and lots of fun. First stop Busch Gardens.
Almost out of the pond.
Wicked roller coaster.
And then off to see the Tigers
Next day over to Universal Studios.
The "new Harry Potter" ride, not opening until 2010, looks like lots of flying going on in that space.
From the Mummy ride.
The Spiderman shop.
Hulk coaster ride.
Next day off to Disney Parks
Roller coaster, 0-60 in 4 seconds, wow.
BOLT, a new Disney movie coming in November this year.
Some Disney art work on show.
Oh course, the Castle.
The Gang are here.
Another great ride and always long queue.
Lots of fun.
Hallowen is coming.
Must not forget Epcot.
These are the trams that pick you up from the carpark and take you to the entrance.
Tower of Terror, what a scream.
70mph almost got beaten to death by her hair.
Had a Corvette for the day, WOW ! great fun.
Then it was off to Sea World and the dolphins.
The return to LGW was straight forward, we had the usual 3 Class config on the B777 but the seating is starting to show its age.
Understand that the Gatwick based B777's will be the last in line for a make over, never mind.
Hope you enjoyed the holiday, I really did, and enjoyed the Florida weather.
Merry Christmas,its just around the corner.