Last year when I moved to Barcelona from England I never thought I was going to commute to Bracknell for 7 months every Monday or Tuesday on a weekly basis. But it happened.
At first, the idea was crazy but after reading the articles on the newspapers I said “sure, why not?” However, as the months went by the tiredness hit me and after 5 months of commuting between the Mediterranean sea and England reached my limit.
As a consequence I had to visit my dear friend the physiotherapist to check my displaced vertebrae and super swollen trapezius muscles that didn’t let me get off my bed after travelling nonstop for 6 months.
Yes, the experience is amazing and I learnt just like George Clooney in the movie “Up in the Air” to fast forward my way from point A (home) to point B ( Bracknell). Sadly, unlike the movie there were not many asian business man in front of the customs queue and more than once I had to wait for people who didn’t pack liquid, carried swiss knifes, couldn’t find the boarding pass, etc.
In the beginning it drove me mad but later I couldn’t help but to laugh at people travelling between the two cities. If anyone would ask me what is the most interesting difference between airports in Barcelona and London, I guess that would be the e-passport control gates. At LHR (London Heathrow) most people ,especially those travelling in the early morning rush to the e-gates and more than once the immigration-officer queue would move faster than the e-gate. On the other hand, Barcelona T1 has more than 10 e-gates (LHR has just 5) and they are fully working but people do not used them, and instead everyone rushes out of the plane and go to the officers. Something to keep in mind on your next trip to BCN T1. BCN T2 is another world and the queues especially if you land in the last plane from London (since they are out of the Schengen and soon out of EU) you have to queue with everyone since the EU priority customs never has any officer. that means that you’ll queue up with people coming from all around the world.
I Love Flying!
True, I still do, but things have changed and after catching a plane every Monday the plane turned from being a machine I used to go on holidays to a bigger-in-size-cousin of the bus I get to go to the city centre. This became true when I started to say “good morning” to the immigration officers at BCN as well as the stewardess.
I am no longer flying as frequently but every time I think of flying I have a flashback and I really all for options on how to get there by car or train if that’s possible.
I hope you don’t get me wrong. I still like flying above the clouds and enjoy a nice sunrise or sunset from window-seat but there’s an annoying feeling that I can’t forget.
In case you are wondering I used to get up at 4.30am Barcelona and I used to get to work around 9:50am in London. The journey included the following:
- Bus: 30 mins
- Bus: 35 mins
- Plane: 2hrs 30 mins
- Car: 30-40 mins (depending on traffic)
Total commuting time: approximately 4 hours
Here’s a 2 minutes video I recorded so you get a feeling of it. On that day I forgot my driving license in Barcelona so I had to take a train, but I used to rent a car to go to work.