We haven't even left Australia yet and we've been "travelling" for eleven hours! I am well and truly floating in the "zone" now. For those of you who have never done a long-haul flight, let me describe the zone in a bit more detail (why does my phone think I want to say 'butt' every time I wasn't to write 'bit'?! How often do people use butt in everyday conversation for goodness sake? I think it's because my language is stuck on US English and I cant get it to change to UK English...grrr!) Back to the zone. So, the majority of the time you walk along with a glazed expression on your face, seeking only that information that is relevant- gate numbers, fight delays, check-in times, that kind of thing. You sit for incredibly long periods of time staring into space, interspersed with merry trips into shops where you plan to spend at least 45 mins closely examining every souvenir, exciting shop keepers with talk of purchasing a last-minute didgeridoo, and then coming to your senses moments before you part with your remaining cash (and realising you already have a cumbersome boogie board strapped into your rucksack and fitting in a didgeridoo just isn't going to happen!) and exiting the shop quietly while they are in the store room (I'm elaborating, but that's the way scenarios go when you're in the zone)
Then, you go to the toilet for the fifteenth time just for something to do and sit awhile in there just for a change of scenery. You consider the best way to use up Australian dollars. Having given up the didgeridoo idea you consider useful body shop products, until you realise that they are all bigger than 100mls so you cant take them in your hand luggage (and your checked-in baggage is full of boogie board). So you use the most expensive tester of body lotion over as much of your body as it is decent to expose and then leave quietly. You consider food, but you have that feeling of already having eaten aeroplane snacks all day so you're not entirely hungry though you do feel vaguely empty. You consider Australian animal finger puppets, at only $5 each they're a bargain...but there are a lot of indigenous animals and you don't have enough for the full set. Unable to decide whether you are more likely to use a wombat or an echidna in a workshop you give up the whole idea, decision-making is not a great quality of the zone.
You realise you have lost track of what souvenirs you have bought for what people, but decide that the principle of buying souvenirs in an airport is just all wrong and that they'd probably rather have nothing than a t-shirt that says "Somebody who loves me has spent 5 hours in Melbourne airport and got me this t-shirt."
You check the board to see if check-in is open yet, realise that it is only five minutes since you last checked and still over four hours until the flight.
Then you decide to blog, and supplement your entry with a photo of chocolate coated peanut brittle.
And there are still four hours to go...