Nothing like a good flight, especially when one is upgraded from business to first (well, the gal does have a top loyalty card because of the amount she flies).
A pity this particularly British Airways flight was departing not from ‘her home’, namely terminal five at Heathrow, but terminal three, which is one dog’s dinner of a mess of every old airline under the sun.
Finally, through to the lounge, an oasis of calm, with an Elemis spa and sensible food. After all, a spot of soup before a flight is what some people want. Make it simple, say a glass of Taittinger and a bowl of nourishing soup.
Onboard this particular 747, a plane I really love, the new seating has been installed. The old, very-public First Class seats, all wood-bits and velvet pillows designed by that South African promotrice Kelly Hoppen, have been replaced by computer-look, ocean-yacht-precision simplicity.
The sleek curves of the grey shell around each seat give lots of privacy, though I am told Nigerians do not approve as ‘they like to be seen’. Impossible to please everyone.
Every seat has its own closet, with plenty of space for shoes and laptop. Porthole windows are now framed as pairs to make really big windows, with proper Venetian blinds, behind glass.
You have two overhead lights and one just-above-the-head light. The table now pulls up and out easily and, one of the best things, there are proper sockets that take both UK as well as US plugs.
Dinner on this flight sounded lovely. Before the meal arrived an amuse was brought, a goats’ cheese confection with slice of beetroot on the top and little beetroot blobs around, delicious.
You can compose your own meal. Say you start with a salad of forest mushrooms topped with blue cheese, and then go on to a steak sandwich, or a beer pudding or Gressingham duck.
Difficult to make up your mind, girl. But later it is not difficult to have hours and hours of absolutely-flat sleep, with a padded mattress under and a fine duvet over. This is the way to fly, especially when the crew are really lovely.
On a 12-hour flight of course you expect breakfast, and I recommend the plum and blueberry smoothie. No space for a full English cooked, only space and time for good coffee.
And then we land, at Singapore. You know you are in Asia (not Heathrow) as two airbridges are not only ready, but already manned.