Round The World and other travels

A frequent flyer's collection of trip diaries

This is: Round The World 2004

Flight Log 2 : BA17

London Heathrow (LHR) - Singapore (SIN)

I was only the third person to arrive in the First cabin, which I would soon find out was fully booked. (It hadn't looked that way on either Amadeus or OLCI.) But then, First never feels full, even when it is! As I settled into Seat 2A, one of the cabin crew offered me a glass of champagne and some cashew nuts, while her colleagues presumably busied themselves herding the teeming masses into Steerage. But all that was "back there somewhere" and of no immediate concern   As I sipped my champagne, the day's earlier anxieties just fell away and I suddenly felt very confident that this was the start of what was going to be my best trip ever. A guy could really get used to this way of travelling

We pushed back from the stand just a few minutes behind schedule, the noise of the tug directly below unusually loud. We crossed the southerly runway and taxied round the eastern side of the airport, passing floodlit Concorde G-BOAB (I think) on our way to the northerly runway for a westbound take-off run. Again, as previously in the Concorde Room, I felt a twinge of regret that I had never made a flight on this beautiful machine and now never would. Soon the distinctive BA 747-400 chimes told me that we were to be the next plane on the runway. The initial thrust of the engines was enough to send several items careering off my visitor's seat, but a fully fuelled 747 is never the most sprightly performer on the runway. After what seemed a very long time indeed, we finally reached V2 and the lumbering giant was transformed into a graceful bird of the air, climbing slowly and taking up a trajectory that would point us directly at Hamburg.

A further round of drinks and canapés followed and I ordered up my first movie of the night, Terminator 3 - The Rise of the Machines. CSD Paul introduced himself in person and made me feel most welcome

The supper menu was as follows :-

Foie Gras Champagne
Richard Corrigan's foie gras and fig terrine with fig compote Perrier Jouet Belle Epoque Brut 1996
Stilton cheese and leek souffle with apricot and cranberry chutney White Wines
Soup Saint-Aubin Premier Cru Les Cortons 2001, Roux Pere et Fils
Parsnip soup with stem ginger Pouilly-Fume Les Griottes 2002, Jean-Pierre Bailly
Salad Starve Dog Lane Chardonnay 2000, Adelaide Hills
Fresh salad leaves with your choice of dressing  
Chicken Sandwich Red Wines
Tex-Mex chicken sandwich on Manoucher bread Chateau Grand Pontet 1996, Saint-Emilion Grand Cru Classe
*  *  * Chareau de Fieuzal 1996, Grand Cru Classe Graves
Lamb Cornish Point Pinot Noir 2001, Central Otago
Roast rack of lamb with a herb crust, basil and tomato jus, crushed peas and potatoes fondantes Ebenezar Barossa Valley Shiraz 1999
Chilli garlic king prawns and pad Thai noodles Dessert Wines
Pasta De Bortoli Noble One Semillon 1996
Fresh pasta with your choice of creamy mushroom sauce or cherry tomato and oregano sauce served with Grana Padano cheese Warre's 1986 Reserve Tawny Port
Grilled Chicken Salad  
Salad of grilled herb-coated chicken with wild mushrooms and basil dressing  
*  *  *  
Hot chocolate sponge pudding with chocolate sauce and vanilla ice cream  
Apple Pie  
Cox's apple pie with clotted cream  
Fountains Gold, Stilton, Bougon Chevre, St-Nectaire and unpasteurised Kirkham's Lancashire cheese  
A basket of fresh fruit  
Espresso, cappuccino, coffee, decaffeinated coffee, tea or herbal tea  

As the hour was late and I had already eaten well for the day, I decided to keep to light choices. I had the parsnip soup (very nice) and the king prawns (outstanding), washed down with a glass of the Chardonnay and followed by a sleep-friendly cup of blackcurrant tea. Towards the end of the meal, as we were passing to the south of Moscow, we encountered a large area of turbulence. The seat belt signs came on, the movie finished, but I couldn't go and change into my PJs! The Russians really need to do something about their air space ... far too bumpy for my liking   Eventually I was able to go and get changed and I lay down on my flat bed, pulled the duvet over me and considered what a fine start the trip had got off to and what a great experience it was all going to be.

I thought of all the places that I would be ...

... that I would be ...


I slept for 6 hours, which has to be a record for me on a plane. I was one of the first to stir, but made a conscious decision to get up and not sleep for too long - after all I would be arriving in Singapore in the evening (local time) so the more tired I felt the better. I changed back into my day clothes and ordered up another movie and some refreshing apple juice. The film? ... Death on the Nile. Yes, a bit of an oldie these days, but why not at that time of the morning? I nearly laughed out loud at the line "Never have I seen such a serpent in a First Class cabin." I had a quick look round my fellow passengers, but none of them seemed to fit the bill, thankfully   The young lady in 1A was amused as well, and was chortling away at something she was watching. Or maybe she had turned round and caught the guy in 2K changing back into his day clothes in his seat

Towards the end of the movie, it was time for breakfast to be served :-

Juice Bacon Roll
Chilled fruit juice Warm bacon roll with tomato ketchup
Smoothie Traditional English Breakfast
An energising fruit smoothie Scrambled eggs, grilled bacon, pork sausage, sautéed mushrooms and grilled tomato
Yoghurt & Cereal Eggs
A selection of fruit, plain yoghurt and cereals Eggs Florentine
Fruit French Toast
Fresh seasonal fruit plate Brioche French toast with a compote of berries
Bakery Beverages
A wide selection of breakfast pastries and rolls Your choice of coffee or tea

I had another glass of apple juice, a smoothie, a bowl of Fruit & Fibre and the traditional cooked breakfast, which was wonderful

I have never felt so fresh after a 13 hour flight. All too soon we were making our approach into SIN and this top-notch flight was at an end. Full marks, BA!

Date: Fri 27 Feb 2004
Aircraft : B747-400
Scheduled dep : 2100
Actual departure : 2113
Scheduled arrival : 1750+1
Actual arrival : 1807+1
Cabin : First
Seat : 2A

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