Just 9 Days to flight
With only 9 days left to the flight, I am still feeling pretty calm about it. I am hoping this feeling will last, but who knows how quickly it could turn. I slept really well last night, but had a pretty stressful day in the end, so was very tired. Today I want to focus how flying made be braver and also helped me to make a massive life choice.
Whilst in San Francisco back in May 2014, something struck me. Having flown half way across the world with Virgin Atlantic (I know not factually correct), for work purposes. If only I could say it was pleasurable, but I think the true fear and anxiety in the lead up to the trip, made the first few days a bit of a blur. I was stood at the sea front, waiting for a meeting with a well known fashion brand, when this came flying past me.
Something just went off in my head. The fact that I had made a massive leap in life, into unknown territory. Seeing the Fire Truck make me think how short life could be. Stood in the middle of a bustling metropolis, having made this journey for work, so why couldn’t I, and more to the point why shouldn’t I do it for my own personal pleasure. A real, proper and relaxing holiday in the sun. It then dawned on me something I had said many years before. I said I would only ever get married if I was with someone for at least 5 years, and would only propose if I was abroad.
At this point, I made a phone call back tot he UK, to two of my best friends. Almost asking for permission to go ahead and propose to my long time boyfriend Stewart. We had been together since 2007, so the 5 year criteria was met, I was abroad, albeit not with him, and I had been on an airplane. This meant I could get on a plane again with him, and arrange something really special and nice.
Calling my two friends Hayley and Lissa, I eagerly told them my plans, completely forgetting that I was 8 hours behind them. It was about 2pm PST, so 10pm back in the UK. Great news both answered and of cause sealed the fact that I would probably get a “YES” if I were to pop the question.
This is where I was stood as I made those calls, I remember it well.
The decision was made
As soon as I got back in the UK, I was super excited. The holiday was booked with Thomas Cook and I was ready to propose as soon as I could. We got back in the May, and Fathers Day was coming up. I knew that Stewart’s Mum & Dad would be in Marmaris, Turkey for Fathers Day. I used that as the perfect excuse for a holiday. Wouldn’t it be great if we booked into the same place and surprised them on Fathers Day. Stewart thought it was a great idea.
When I booked the holiday and asked our cousin Cameron to come and look after the cats for us whilst away. The house would be safe and the cats well looked after. I then booked my brother to play taxi to Birmingham Airport for me. I’ve always helped him out with airport runs. He was happy to help.
The week prior to the flight, I was a nervous wreck. Not only was the flight imminent, but so was popping the question. I do recall sleeping most nights that week, but a mixture of anxiety and excitement would keep me waking up very easily. My friendly Doctor prescribed my Diazepam, you will notice they feature heavily in my flying blogs. Armed and ready to go!
On the afternoon of the 15th June 2014 my brother drove us down to Birmingham International Airport. Filled with nerves and two wedding rings in my suitcase (I couldn’t decide which one to get) off we went. On arrival at the airport we sat in a bar near an area that smokers could go and have their final cigarette. We kept going out to get some fresh air, ironically. The air was filled with stale and fresh tobacco and that familiar smelling aviation fuel. Great mix as you can imagine.
I remember being just as nervous getting on this plane, and there were many toilet trips at the airport. I was glad to be going on a holiday abroad, as its something Stewart had wanted to do for so long, but at the same time, I was filled with reluctance to get on the plane.
I didn’t eat a great deal before this flight, and have to be honest don’t remember much of the flight itself. I do remember sitting in the airport thinking of all the familiar what if’s? What if we just don’t go, if I don’t need to propose, if the plane crashes? What if, What if, What if! I think with the little food I had, the flight just went by really quickly and next thing I remember is being in a queue in Dalaman Airport to get out passports stamped.
Proof that I was on the plane at least
The Holiday and Proposal
The holiday was absolutely amazing. You should have seen my in laws faces when we knocked on their door the following morning. Here we are at the famous Mermaid Fountain in Marmaris.
The sun was amazing, I had never felt so rejuvenated and relaxed. I was so glad that despite the 4 hr and 10 minute flight, that I had made the effort to soak up some culture. And some 40 degrees heat!
Wednesday was the big day. Being an old school type, I had already asked Stewart’s Dad for permission. It just seemed like the done thing to me. On Tuesday night randomly, Stewart did ask if we would ever get married. I shall talk about that another time though.
As it turns out, my plans to propose on a beach, during sunset were massively spoilt. It turns out Marmaris beach is pretty stony, and the sunset over the hills behind, so it was a total disaster. Coupled with a long standing hip injury that Stewart had, the plan was completely out of the window. What was I to do!
A ray of light from nowhere. I saw a nice little pier close to a hotel. After convincing Stewart to walk a little further up the beach, I asked the waiters if we could sit on the pier. It was just perfect! We were the only ones on it, as it was a private hotel pier, and we had the waiter bring over some drinks.
The nerves got more and more as I tried to chose my time to get down on one knee, presenting the ring and asking the question. I was worried that the ring would fall through the wooden planks of the pier.
It was time. I got down on one knee just as a moth attacked Stewart, who was waving his arms around and looking the other way. You couldn’t have planned it any better. When he turned back his face was a picture, and there it was, I popped the question. It was a YES! Now he just had to decide which ring he preferred.
So I guess the point I am making after my nice little love story, is that Flying opened up more than the rest of the world for me, it opened up my life.