The Qantas pajamas developed a life of their own. Comfy – yes; attractive – not so when viewed in the mirror of an aircraft toilet where you have to adopt the posture of a hunchback just to gain access. Nonetheless the cabin lights were dimmed and I made a mental note to get redressed before dawn. Must have been the subconscious influence of all the recent vampire movies which I not been watching.
As I only had a small computer case which was already full of electrical equipment, sunglasses, bible etc, I couldn’t squeeze the pajamas in so I put them back into the thin plastic bag in which they had been wrapped after being whipped up on an industrial Husqvana in Shanghai. This worked well on the journey to my layover hotel and the pjs were convenient for my requisite rest. But they didn’t want to go back in that bag a third time and they struggled to make this point fully known.
Never go to sleep with damp hair. I know, but I hate those dryers. So I shouldn’t have been surprised by the look I received at the immigration desk as I exited Heathrow towards my connecting flight. It could have been the fact that my hair was positively Papuan, or the unexpected laying bare of my pajamas at the immigration officer’s feet. Bugger that plastic bag.
I felt I needed a distraction to easy my humiliation. There was a shoe-shine booth (shades of the 1929 depression) in Terminal 5. Nothing like sitting up by yourself clutching pajamas, a hat, jacket and a briefcase to make one feel inconspicuous. The result, however, was quite effective.
No doubt distracted by the glare from my footwear, I failed to notice that the pajamas had attempted suicide by falling out whilst I was on an escalator. Thank you Somalian lady who picked them up for me before the escalator got them in a choke hold. ‘Maintenance to escalator 15’ – I can just imagine the announcement now. I then discovered that there was now a hole in both ends of the bag.