A Missed Flight, A Speeding Ticket and Food Poisoning in One Day

It wasn’t the best day.

I mean, it started off nice enough. I woke up to our last day in the sunny island of Mallorca. With a flight tonight at 5 minutes past midnight, I had the entire day to explore and relax.

Today we were exploring the gorgeous village of Valldemossa which has been an all-time favourite village of mine in Mallorca. Sundays are the best days to visit! On Sundays Valldemossa hosts a market which starts early in the morning and then closes at 2pm. The market is perfect to grab some fresh produce or some knock-off watches and sunglasses. I can’t tell you just how many pairs of Ray-Beri’s I have in my sunglasses collection for around €3 per pair. Nothing beats Ray-Beri’s, hah.

A creature oh habit, I strolled through the bustling market, making some nifty purchases and perfecting my negotiating skills, before strutting off towards the town square to a cute Spanish restaurant. I visit this restaurant every time I come to Valldemossa but still I don’t know its name!

I first stumbled across the village of Valldemossa years ago when I was driving to scenic Deia. Knowing me, I probably needed a wee on our long drive so we stopped off for a rest in Valldemossa. I satisfied my bladder but also fell in love at the same time. Valldemossa stole my heart the moment I laid eyes on it! With a gorgeous array of restaurants and cobbled streets, there is something so charming about it. Plus, I probably noticed a few cats as that tends to be what draws me into a place… I’m weird like that, okay!

I sat gorging on some delicious serrano ham, the majestic Carthusian Monastery of Valldemossa towering over me. Out of the corner of my eye I noticed – could it be?! – a cat! Of course, I had to go over and pet it!

So far the day was going swimmingly!

Pumped up from our first exploration of the day, we continued our voyage north to the picturesque village of Deià which is perhaps most famous housing a few celebrities including Richard Brandson and Catherine Zeta-Jones.

The village is perched upon Mallorca’s northen coastline amongst tall mountains. Due to its high vantage point, Deià yields stunning views of the ocean.

It was a magical drive from Valldemossa to Deià. On our right, the land dropped away into nothing. Sheer drops hugged the road and if I glanced down, I couldn’t see where land met the see. It’s as if the world just ended beside us.

Deià is a tiny village and I mean tiny! We had a quick stroll through the village, soaking up some of the majestic views and breathing in the refreshing Mallorcan countryside before deciding to head back to our villa.

“Do you want to drive back?” Lewis asked.

He had done 95% of the driving on this trip and I was keen to take George for a spin before we dropped him off tonight. I was sure going to miss George!

I leapt into the driver’s seat and began the journey back.

Like I said, the day was going nice enough.

We concluded our short getaway to Mallorca with a meal at the Harbour Grill in Port Adriano, one of my favourite restaurants on the island. With a glass of rosé wine in hand, I tucked into my juicy steak tartar and took bites out of the beef carpaccio. What a perfect end to our trip!

If only that was the end…

We allowed plenty of time to drop George back at the car rental company. We would be using their shuttle-bus to get to Palma airport and didn’t know how frequent the buses would be. I wasn’t prepared to risk arriving at the airport too late.

All went well and we waved goodbye to George as we boarded the bus. I sure would miss that car. The ‘polished turd’ provided us with heaps of fun and was a key part of our adventures.

As we entered the airport, I immediately went to check the departures board. Although I don’t have to do this as we don’t travel with any checked luggage, I always like to be safe and nothing makes me happier than seeing our flight up there with its departure time.

I glanced over the list of flights. There was one at 12.00am and one at 12.10am and hmmmm… 12.05am would be in the middle of those two right? Maybe I’m looking at the arrivals board.

We trudged to another board. I stood, craning my neck as I searched for her flight. Where is Easyjet flight to Manchester at 12:05am? I wondered.

I looked at all Easyjet flights, wondering if I remembered the time wrong but none were going to Manchester. Maybe they have many board with different flights on them? Lewis stood, puzzled, beside me.

“I’ll just check the confirmation email on my phone.” I stated, as I pulled up my phone and quickly scanned through my email.

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I screwed up my eyes, completely perplexed. “It says it landed fine.” I wasn’t quite understanding the meaning of the words. “It landed.”

“You mean we missed it?” Lewis gasped in horror.

“That doesn’t make any sense…” I pondered. “It definitely says it’s at 12.05am on here. 12.05am on Sunday 8th July.”

Then it hit me.

“Oh my god.” My knees became weak. “That was this morning wasn’t it?”

What followed next was an incredibly uncomfortable and stressful hour. To say that Lewis exploded on me would have been an understatement. I actually had to walk away from him as I couldn’t possibly problem-solve with his anger in my space. Lewis has strong reactions to negative situations whereas I calmly like to come up with solutions, even though inside I’m struggling.

On my own I was then able to search up some flights on Skyscanner. There was a Jet2 flight at lunchtime the next day which would get us back home in time for Tuesday. We needed to be home for Tuesday as we had a busy work schedule that day. The only catch was that the flights cost £150 per person. Of course our missed Easyjet flight was non-refundable. Purchasing these tickets then felt like I was holding up £300 and burning it with a lighter. But we had no choice.

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Fortunately, my brother and sister were still staying at the villa so we were able to return to them for the night. However, it did mean that we had to blow another €50 on getting there and the next day it would take another €50 to get back to the airport.

My moronic mistake had so far cost me around £400 which was a massive hole in my pocket.

“That’s more expensive than our entire trip here. We could have had another holiday for that.” Lewis stated.

I just shot him a look. Now was not the time.

Of course, my brother and sister found the situation very funny.

“Welcome back!” My sister greeted cheerfully.

It all felt so surreal. I threw my bag beside the bed as I was forced to make the bed up again. I’d just stripped it this morning! The thought that I wasn’t meant to be here just kept circling over and over in my mind. It’s strange to think that a small misunderstanding can completely change the course of something.

Now that we were back with a bed to sleep in, Lewis had calmed down dramatically. He reminds me of a bomb. He explodes quickly but then once he’s exploded, he’s done and calm again.

I wish I could tell you that I had a good night’s sleep. But that would have been quite the lie.

I woke up at some silly time whilst it was still dark outside with serious stomach cramps. I needed the toilet quickly. I’d experienced this feeling too many times now so I knew instantly what was going on. Food poisoning. the curse of the last day was well and truly a thing. I don’t know what it is but on the last day of every holiday I always seem to get food poisoning. It happened in Sri Lanka. It happened in Namibia. Now it was happening in Mallorca. Not only is it mighty unpleasant to have an upset stomach, but it always happens on the last day of the holiday, just as I’m about to catch a flight!

I slept fitfully after that, forcing myself to stay in bed until the alarm had gone off. Another trip to the bathroom and then it was time to leave. I whimpered softly to myself. This was not going to be a fun travel day. My stomach twisted once more.

I turned to Lewis. “Are you feeling okay?” I asked, aware that he also had a steak tartar last night. It was strange because I ate the steak tartar there frequently and had never had any issues before.

“Fine.” He responded. “Why?”

“Oh, I don’t feel so good.”

My sister was still sleeping, but I’d be sure to ask her later if she was feeling okay because she also ate a steak tartar.

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The plane journey home was one of the most unpleasant I had experienced. Not only was I aware of the financial pain I was in but my stomach was seized with cramps and I was overwhelmed with the fear that I may not be able to hold any longer without going to the toilet.

The pain was so, so bad.

Lewis, however, was fine. How lucky for him.

I could have kissed the ground when we landed. I wanted nothing more than to race back home and have a nice warm bath. I felt tired, irritable and dirty.

When I reached home I thought that the cursed last day was over.

I was wrong. Everything comes in threes, after all.

It took a couple of days before the third thing came to bite us in our already sore asses. A letter poked itself through the letterbox from the Calvià council. Tentatively we ripped open the envelope to reveal a very formal Spanish letter. On the second page was a blurred black and white photograph of George.

It was a god damn speeding ticket.

We were being fined €100 for going 103 km/h in a 100 km/h zone. I checked the date and rolled my eyes. 8th July – the day we weren’t even meant to be in Mallorca. So this was another €100 down the drain as a result of my stupidity with getting our flight times mixed up. On top of this we had to pay a handling fee to our car rental company for forwarding on our details to the council. What are we on, like £500 down now? What an expensive mistake.

“Who got the ticket?” Lewis asked.

Lewis did most of the driving so of course it was natural to assume it was him.

“I’ve never got a speeding ticket before.” He complained, looking tad dejected.

I felt a tiny bit of joy. Yay, now I wasn’t the only one who was in the dog-house! We were both morons, not just me.

“Wait, what time does it say it was at?” Lewis took the letter and examined it.

“Ehhh it says 4pm.” I responded.

Lewis thought for a moment. “Wasn’t that when you were driving?”

“Oh my god.” I could have facepalmed. It was when I was driving. I was driving back from Deià and we have photographic evidence of that.

Lewis smirked. “The only time you drove, you got a speeding ticket.” At least he could see the funny side.

I was a moron after all.