Several of you have inquired how my Dad is doing after his unscheduled stop in Dubai. In case you’ve missed the news, Mum and Dad were flying home from Australia and Dad was taken ill on the flight, and rather than just the two-hour stopover expected, they ended up staying for three weeks. Paramedics were on the plane before the Captain had applied the handbrake, and following preliminary tests, Dad was taken to the medical centre at Dubai airport.
Extensive tests revealed a ‘problem’ heartbeat, and for a time it was looking like a pacemaker would be required. Instead, Dad was fitted with a total of three stents and following a period of recuperation in a hotel, was given the all clear to continue the journey home to England – exactly three weeks later.
We have all learned something from this experience and in no particular order:
- Travel insurance is a very good thing.
- Dubai is a great place to be taken ill.
- That Filipino health care professionals don’t stop smiling and treated ‘Mr. Richard’ like one of the family.
- Skype is not permitted in the UAE; thank heavens for WhatsApp.
- None of us should be flying for longer than 8 hours before having a break (at least one overnight stop).
- If anyone questions why you are spending so much money on flying business class and decide to travel ‘cattle class’ – totally ignore them, especially if it’s your daughter.
- Most importantly learn to do EVERYTHING, so when your ‘rock’ isn’t with you, and you have to deal with life’s unexpected challenges, you’ve got this.
- When you really have to step up to the plate and take over the reins you (or Mum) can actually surprise yourself and do it
- My Mum doesn’t know this but she is totally one of life’s true Amazon Warriors.
So that’s it, some lessons learned and some takeaways for us all. And Dad? He’s gaining fitness and pleased to be home even if he does have a mountain of insurance papers to sift through – let Mum do them!
What about you, have you experienced an unexpected travel stop?