I’m in Seattle this week and now I’ve remembered why I’ve been avoiding using Heathrow as my US connection.
You see I’ve written before about the pitfalls of parents not spending a little more time choosing kids’ names.
One of my thousands of namesakes is, how do I put this nicely, not very popular with the UK government. As a result whenever I am booked on a US flight out of London there’s a red flag on my ticket. Normally this is dealt with at check-in, when it becomes apparent I am a different Tom Murphy to the one they don’t like. It takes about 15 minutes, a couple of phone calls and then I’m on my way.
I had forgotten this rigmarole this morning as I landed in Heathrow (after a delay), ran back through security – “sir you’ll have to put that plastic bag inside your briefcase you’re only allowed one bag through security” – huh? – ran to the connections desk, got a boarding pass, ran to the bus, on to Terminal 4, just in time for boarding and then as I hand my boarding card in I am asked to sit quietly to the side. After a couple of phone calls I get the all clear and they apologize and tell me that they have to check as there are multiples of the same name on the flight. Now I know this is hogwash, but that’s OK, no big deal.
Also I should point out that all the BA staff were incredibly pleasant. I just wish my parents had called my Ziggy.
There’s nothing like ten hours on a plane in the middle of the middle section. Mmmm cosy…