Travelling to another country all by myself was a definite first for me. Normally, whenever I would go out of the country, I would usually be with my family or my friends. But this time, I was on my own.
Looking back, I believe it was a good experience for me and I think everyone should try it at least once in their lives. It was actually more of a trial for me, since when I got to Sydney, my aunt was there to welcome me. Maybe next time, I’ll be able to try visiting another country by myself, with no relatives or friends that I know of.
|View from my seat in the waiting area|
So anyway, since my flight was on a Friday night, I was actually coming from the office. Luckily, my client meeting ended up just on time so I didn't have to worry about the traffic and being late. My cousin was the one who drove me to NAIA Terminal 2 and we arrived there at around 5:30 PM. We actually took a bit of a detour first because I had to pick up my newest "toy" so I could take it with me in my vacation. Given that I had enough time, I was able to remove some of my clothes from my luggage as I might have over packed a bit. I had a free baggage allowance of 23 kg, and since I would definitely be bringing more when I return, I though it would be better to be on the safe side.
The airport wasn't very crowded when I arrived, so I didn't encounter any problems checking in. I also got a cart for my luggage since I also had my work laptop with me. There were no queues yet so I was able to check in easily. However, one problem I encountered was that when I had to go to the restroom, I had to bring all my stuff with me since I couldn't leave it with some stranger. Fortunately, the cubicles were big enough to bring in the trolley while I do my business.
The next difficulty I faced was filling up the immigration form. Not that I didn't know what to put, but it’s just that I couldn't seem to find my pen. I've tried taking out all my stuff from my bag, but I still couldn't find it. There were no pens available in the counters so I had to borrow from one of the attendants. Since I was able to finish early the pre-boarding procedures, I had some time to relax and even charge my gadgets at the airport. There was also free wifi so I managed to facetime with my aunt in Sydney. The next thing I know, we were already being called for boarding.
The ticket I paid for allowed me to choose the seat beforehand. Since I was travelling alone, I chose to sit on an aisle seat instead of the window seat so I can have easier access to the restroom whenever I need to. However, before getting to my seat, I had a hard time getting through, since my luggage was a bit wider than the width of the aisle. After a bit of pulling and some maneuvering on my part, I was able to finally reach my seat. The people around were kind enough to help me with my hand-carry luggage. Lucky for me, I was seated next to an elderly woman with her grandson. So I was at least assured that I wouldn't be bothered during the flight. Anyway, after ensuring that my luggage were properly stored, I began to mentally prepare myself for our take-off. Because, yes, I do admit that though I love to travel, I particularly don't like take-offs and encountering heavy turbulence during any flight. I actually envy those people who instantly fall asleep and would just awaken when the plane has already landed.
|Managed to finish three movies|
Well, maybe it just comes with age. Because I remember that when I was travelling as a child with my parents, I was worry-free and actually excited to ride on a plane. Now that I'm older, I guess I'm more aware of my mortality and of the things that can go wrong. To help lessen my anxiety during take-offs, I just normally pray the rosary. Only when the seat belt sign has been removed, am I able to truly relax. I guess it also helped when I performed a basic research beforehand on turbulence. This gave me some comfort and a sense of safety after knowing more about it. To take my mind off any remaining worry, I decided to just watch some movies. I think I was able to finish around three movies and I even managed to catch some much needed shut-eye in between. It was also a blessing that the flight was smooth overall. Though we still experienced some turbulence, it was minimal and didn't last very long.
Nevertheless, I couldn't contain my excitement when our pilot announced that we have safely landed in Sydney Airport. With my bags in tow, I was eager to finally start my three-week Australian adventure.