Executive Lounge

A grey evening full of rain. The sky is a billowing cloud, oppressive and low. Through the window I’ve got a panoramic view of the runway at Newquay airport. It’s a dead place. The rain doesn’t make it beautiful. Occasionally a plane manages to land and disgorges its haul of multicoloured humans, who run and curse their way into the shelter of this tiny uninspiring airport. Everybody looks a little bit pissed off in this weather – passengers and staff. And can you blame them? It’s relentless.

I’m in the executive lounge now. It’s a cupboard with a carpet but it’s relaxed and nobody is loudly crying. My flight is delayed by at least two hours and I get a limited number of lounge passes per annum. Six, I think. Through my bank account. I’ve used two, on the flight back from Spain for Mel and I. Now I’m using another. Three more for America, and they renew in October. Perks like this are worth finding out about and making use of in precisely this sort of circumstance.

This lounge is as shit as the weather is but it’s better than the main part of the airport, full of rage and expensive consumables. It’s definitely the right place for me to be in this grey mood. There’s a fridge full of free drinks and a table made up with free snacks. It’s pretty empty here too. Just the Ents. Two ancient stooped seven foot tall scotsmen watch tennis and exchange monosyllables. I’m in the corner with a cold can of Korev and a banana, watching the weather and the runway. This rain is ridiculous – constantly beating down. There’ll be floods tonight. Even the old men are talking about it in their Entish way. “Big rain.” “Aye.” “Bad.” “Aye it is. … Bad.” “Bad rain.” “Aye.”

It’s why I’m still in Cornwall, though. This bad rain. I’m here for bad weather contingency, and I’ve shot all but one of my scenes. I’ll be back briefly next week but I’m mostly done already. Nice to know I’ll get back as I very much like the team. It’s an enjoyable shoot full of personality. These Germans are efficient. They’ve been doing this for years. They know each other and they know the form. It’s a pleasure doing my thing for and with them, even if all my lovely nuanced vocal work will be immediately dubbed and exported. Frankly I’m just happy to be working. I always am, dammit. Nice to remember how it is on a set. To flex those muscles. To be good at it. It’s why I weather all the hard times, so I can slot into that machine and be unruffled and do the thing I do.

The Ents have gone to Manchester through the bad rain, packed in to this little plane that came in half an hour ago – two vast grey sardines in a little tin can.


I’m alone in this cupboard with a fridge full of free beer for at least another 90 minutes. I’ll only be in the air for 45. Am I really the only guy with free passes on their bank account? I doubt it. But I’m the only guy that thought to use them. Me and the Ents.

Author: albarclay

This blog is a work of creative writing. Do not mistake it for truth. All opinions are mine and not that of my numerous employers.

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