A while ago, I wrote this….
A lot’s happened since then. I had a garden office built, went solar and invested in a Tesla Powerwall so that I could de-disk electricity supply issues.
I also adopted Cairo as a friend for Milo, had a couple of breaks and have effectively given up my day job to help steer a huge programme across a number of companies that fall under the group umbrella.
Coincidentally, the company that employs me has an issue that needs somebody from the UK to go to Sydney to untangle some issues.
I was asked.
I said that I could. But. Oh damn. I’m unvaccinated. Shame really. This wasn’t disingenuous, I’ve been twice and don’t need 48 hours on a plane or long days abroad at all.
And I don’t fancy leaving the dogs for ten days either… Cairo in particular frets when I’m gone for even a day.
Except. New South Wales entry requirements on their website says this.
So it seemed that I could go. The thing is that this trip ties in nicely with the new role and i can get a lot accomplished much more quickly than if I don’t.
Remember, I’m unvaccinated, at first I was hesitant, but that position has hardened over the past year and there’s no chance at all of me taking it now.
So I applied for a visa that allowed me to work for a while and was pleasantly surprised to find no vaccination questions and it was granted within a minute – very impressive.
Flights were booked via Etihad and I found a nice hotel near the office.
I then contacted business people and friends in country to sort out meetings and beers.
So far, so good.
Australia requires you to fill in a Digital Passenger Declaration, but you can’t do that until seven days before you fly, So I filled mine in while on holiday with the doglets in Wales, it’s a simple document and it clearly gives an outcome.
Except it doesn’t. I fully expected to be told to fuck off – as I don’t meet the current standards for the federal government according to the DPD.
Except I wasn’t. But there’s no way I’m taking a risk at check-in as to whether I can fly, but luckily, the airline has a service that can do this for you.
Only 72 hours before the flight.
So I tried to call. I got an automated service that told me nothing. So I tried live chat. Frustrating and quite sad in a way
So I tried a few other numbers and eventually talked to a human. Probably in India. They told me to check their website. The call didn’t go well.
I have a good friend in Sydney and he spent three hours on the phone with the authorities. He sent me a mail.
This basically stopped me cold, I did try to ring the consulate, but they pointed me at the same number as my friend.
So I had to wait until this morning to fill out the online form for the airline.
That was seven hours ago, I doubt I’ll get an answer today.
I genuinely don’t care if I have to cancel or not (part of me would like that). But the Australians seem even more fucked up than I ever thought possible.
I’ll wait for the outcome as to whether I can fly, but until then, I’m neither flying or cancelling.
And then. And then.
Within an hour of my self imposed deadline to cancel the flight on Monday 4th July at 14:30 – the Australians dropped all restrictions and tests. For the day of my flight.
Tomorrow 6th July.
So off I go.
You couldn’t make this shit up.
Welcome to 2022.