We needed to be at Cape Town airport by 11 am this morning having handed in our hire car. I had tried to check in on-line so that we could just do a bag drop but had once again struggled with an internet connection at the hotel. I don't know how local people manage because the service is very slow so just trying to get onto Qater Airways website took more than 15 minutes, so the chances of booking in for our flight were quite negligible. We therefore had some breakfast and then drove to the airport which only took just over 30 minutes. Handing in the car, which we had filled up just off the airport road took no time at all, probably due to the 20 rand tip to the guy checking it. It was a long walk from the hire car stations to the departure area and then of course quite a long queue to finally get rid of our suitcases.

The flight left on time and Joan and I had pre booked seats when I bought the tickets so had seats quite near the front of economy. Good selection of films to watch and a reasonable meal supplied so the 9 hours passed away quite quickly. We arrived in Doha, our change over airport just after 1 am and then had a 6 hour wait for our connection flight. We discovered quite early on that our eventual departure gate was almost a 2 mile walk to the other side of the airport, so with my limp and walking stick went to the girl on a Qatar desk and she arranged a buggy to take us. They collected us very quickly and took us to a transit lounge to wait. There were some lounger seats there and they said they were going to collect us 30 minutes before final check in, so Joan went off to get us some coffee and then we settled down for a nap.

True to their word, they rurned up with another buggy thing and took us to the gate. Here we discovered that we needed a bus to get out to our plane, easy for us as they now turned up with a support guy to escort us. When the bus stopped at the bottom of the steps we were told to stay on until everybody had got off, we were then taken round the other side of the plane, together with another guy with walking sticks, then sort of loaded onto the flight through another side door with a lift truck. This was a smaller plane than the Dreamliner that we had been on but appeared to have plenty of leg room. Another meal, this time brealkfast, and as it was only a 3 hour flight to Larnaca we arrived at 11 am local time, by now the 17th October.

Before we disembarked one of the stewardesses had asked us to wait until everybody had got off and then when we got off the plane there was a guy with a wheelchair for both me and the other walking stick man. Great stuff we were escorted by the wheelchair man through speedy passport control and then to baggage reclaim. Joan had a trolley which the guy loaded for her and then took us all the way out to the pick up point for our off airport parking connection. The end result of all this treatment made us realise that a walking stick and a limp gets you great escorted service, we will for sure make use of it again.

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