A week ago today, I landed at Heathrow airport in London, U.K. for a series of meetings with our European and Japanese counterparts. The meetings went quite well and I was looking forward to going back home on Friday. Unfortunately, events conspired against me. On Thursday, the Eyjafjallajökull volcano in Iceland erupted and sent plumes of ash into the air which drifted SE over UK airspace (and beyond). As the ash poses a safety issues for the airliners, they have been grounded.
My original Friday flight was canceled and while I was able to extend my hotel and move my flight to Monday (tomorrow) that has just been canceled. Currently, I’m on hold with my company’s travel agent to determine what options exist. One possibility may be to take a train to mainland Europe (Chunnel to Paris, probably) and then a train to Spain or elsewhere that still have operating airports.
I had fun yesterday visiting the Science Museum, Natural History Museum, and the Victoria & Albert Museum. I enjoyed it as I was just going to be here for a few days more. With no significant change in the conditions of the volcano or the airflow, there’s a chance airports could remain closed for an additional week or more. What was a inconvenience is now becoming a real problem.
I’ll try to keep my Twitter feed (public WiFi access permitting) updated with major developments.