For the moment this plane is not going anywhere.....
It has been a long day travelling from London to Washington. The flight was excellent, comfortable with good food and very few bumps along the route. It was as we neared Washington that the problems started, beginning with a lightning strike on the plane - impressive bang! We carried on through the storm clouds and began to notice that we weren't getting any lower. The Captain announced that we were not able to land because the winds were too strong on the ground - we were going to hang around for a while in the air and hope the storm shifted. It didn't.
Plan B was announced which was to land at Baltimore, take on some more fuel and then head back to Washington (Dulles). We duly landed BUT we had to wait while paramedics came on board for a passenger feeling unwell and a couple of technical issues were checked out stemming from the lightning strike, There was a long wait while one, and then two people were stretchered off the plane followed by their families. Captain then announced that we weren't going to be able to get the plane sorted quickly and we would disembark and be transported to Dulles. Quite a few (including us) felt it was easier to head independently from Baltimore as it's not that far from Washington. The plane needed to be towed to a proper stand where we could get off through an air bridge. BUT the first tractor that came to push back the plane broke down and we had to wait for another, eventually getting to the stand, Baltimore is quite a small airport and not used to planes as big as ours landing so the airbridge was not easy to fit - that involved more waiting - and our good-humoured Captain said it was becoming a Comedy of Errors!
Eventually we were out and on the ground properly though this airport was not geared up with enough personnel to get a jumbo load of people through customs at a reasonable rate. Mind you, I've seen Luton airport far more congested and that does have the resources.
Luggage collected, we journeyed on and at last made it to Washington and the hotel. Exhausted after all the problems and the five hour time difference, sleep will be good!