I remember the days when I travelled regularly and the dream of Gold Airline Status was a real goal. Now the only status anxiety I have is whether I’m positive or negative. And I’m pleased to announce: the result is negative.
Christmas morning was spent driving around my local area hunting down a Covid Testing Clinic so I could get my compulsory, 1 day before travel, Covid Test. I had over-planned this to the point of taking my prepaid booking form to the local testing place two weeks in advance and personally asking the team if they would be open on Christmas Day. They said “yes, definitely.”
Fast forward two weeks and I roll in at 8am on Christmas morning and it was deserted. Crickets and tumbleweeds. The sign read: Closed on Public Holidays. I eventually found another clinic 20 kilometres away and got the test without too much stress. I did not expect to get a result, however, as the news has been filled with stories of ruined holidays due to long wait times.
There was a backup plan, with another test booked at International Terminal at Sydney Airport, where thankfully they had recently banned all of the people (peasants) who were only travelling domestically and had been clogging up the system.
I enjoyed a lovely Christmas in my home town, which turned on the best Christmas weather seen in years. I gave myself an upper cut and said: “Self, even if your trip gets delayed or cancelled, you fail the test or you don’t get the results in time, who cares? This place is like heaven on earth. You could do worse than just stay here.”
At bed time, still no sign of the results. I said “oh well” and went to bed. At 2am I checked my emails and there it was. “I failed!”
This morning the sons chauffeured me to the airport and I breezed past all those unfortunate people lining up at the Airport Covid Test Clinic. The United check-in people gave all of my hard-won certificates a cursory glance and handed me my boarding pass. Not even a gold star provided. It seemed a missed opportunity.
The Business Class Lounge is not open so I’m writing this from the almost empty airport waiting area. And look at me go, I’m not even complaining. In another hour I will be sipping champagne from Seat 3G. The Festival of Tina has officially begun.