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Last updated : Nov 2009
Brisbane, Australia
Sep 11, 2004


The flight to Brisbane took just under six hours and added two hours to my watch. I shared the flight with Brian, New Zealand born and bred, almost pensioner/keen traveller who was just returning from Bali after spending seven weeks off the beaten track in Indonesia.

He could see I was completely 'zombied' and how it was painful for me to talk but was kind enough to let me listen anyway while he told me of his adventures and what I ought to do be doing in New Zealand at certain times of the year. He meant well really and was actually quite interesting, very knowledgeable. It was just apparent that he'd never really learned the concept of 'time and place' - not that I minded at all really but after a few minutes a tall tanned European chap from a few seats in front came and leant over me and spoke right into Brian's ear: 'Listen mate I've just heard all about it and it sounds great. It's just that you've got one of those voices that really carries. Can you just knock it down a notch? We're all trying to get some sleep in front. There's about four or five of us that are unhappy. Is that alright? Just tone it down a bit eh? Cheers'. He patted me on the shoulder and walked back to his seat. I never said a word. Brian said absolutely nothing. I'm sure he must have looked at me but if he did he would have seen that I was fast asleep. It's the only way I could find to deal with it. I wish you could have seen the sort of face Brian had anyway, let alone after that.

I woke up and drifted back off a few times until we landed in Brisbane. The cabin crew announced that despite the World Health Organisation's concerns over insecticide spraying in the cabin, there was nothing to worry about. According to Brian, while I had been asleep, they had sprayed some insecticide around cos' we were landing in Australia. Apparently it was to kill all the bugs/insect life from Indonesia to prevent them from entering Australia.

Because of the security issues in Australia at present, those of us that were flying on to Auckland still had to remove ourselves and our belongings from the aeroplane and go through the scanners again before we re-boarded. I was just glad to get another leg stretch. We arrived in Brisbane at around 5:30am. There wasn't a cloud in the sky and the sun was fierce. I phoned home for five or ten minutes much to their amazement of my being in Bali earlier in 'their day' and was now in Brisbane. Luckily, we were not kept waiting for too long and by then it was time to board for Auckland.

Brian kindly offered me his window seat as he believed it was important for me to see Auckland as we approached New Zealand. He was a thoughtful, considerate chap really, though I will always smile when I think of his *ollocking. Bless him.