The billboards at Heathrow, the airport with more international travelers than any in the world, said it all: Madrid: Cancelled. Dallas/Ft Worth: Cancelled. Istanbul: Cancelled. Hong Kong: Cancelled. Toronto: Cancelled. Sydney via Singapore: Cancelled.
And Costa Rica? Yes, yes, those flights are canceled, too.
Most travelers, advised of the situation, had left Britain’s airports, but those who were unclear about what was going on, or who had no money to go anywhere else, or who were simply desperate – milled around for a third day Saturday, lugging suitcases from here to there and back, and hoping the bizarre turn of events that messed up their plans would reverse itself and become right as suddenly as it had gone all wrong.
Some were stressed because they needed to get back to their offices.
Others were stressed because this had been their opportunity to get away from their offices.
Some had weddings to attend. Others, funerals.
Couples were arguing. Babies were crying. Siblings were punching each other. Airline representatives were, it would seem, by and large AWOL.