From my travel journal: Friday 1 April 2011, 5.26 pm

Auckland airport, sitting at the departure gate.

Ok, Auckland is officially evil. I knew I had 2 hours between flights, so once I’d walked from domestic to international (and may just have released a book on the way :-)) I went through passport control, then completed the important mission of buying a NZ flag (well, Skyring had informed me he was planning on decorating the car with Australian flags, and we can’t have that!), then thought I’d check where my gate was before having a wander through the other shops in the hour or so I had left. I looked up at the departures board, and nearly had a heart attack – it was saying “Final call” for my flight, and the boarding time it was showing was an hour earlier than what was written on my boarding pass. So I raced to the gate without stopping to buy myself a bottle of water as I’d planned, and now that I’m here (and through yet another security checkpoint thanks to US paranoia), there’s nowhere to buy water other than a vending machine that only takes coins (which I don’t have, having carefully avoided having to cart any NZ change around with me), and they’re not actually boarding the plane for another half an hour!

So Auckland obviously has a different definition of the words “final call” to any other airport on the planet… Not fair, I could have stayed in the duty free bit for ages more, and maybe even found an internet kiosk for a while.

Good thing I’ve got a book (or two, or three.. there is no way I’m getting bored on this flight!)…

(Ah, I just overheard someone else complaining about the “final call” thing – apparently they do it on flights to America to make sure everyone turns up to the gate early, because of the extra security checks… very sneaky!)

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