Matt Niblock - Product designer, street photographer, tech geek, and human.


My place for general ramblings and ideas.

Reflections from a departure lounge

It’s coming up to a year anniversary since I braved going travelling on my own for the first time. If you look back at my Instagram feed you’ll see plenty of Stories filed under States, that checked off the must-do social media task that declares the fact, “I’m on holiday, y’all. Just so you know.”

But here we are, almost a year on and I’m sitting in the departure lounge at Gatwick having an almost identical breakfast in an almost identical pub, while waiting for a plane to go to my second solo trip abroad; Copenhagen.

Around me are the typical varied clientele you’d expect from a 24 hour pub in a departure lounge. On the table to my right I have a typical lads’ holiday group, drinking pints and getting over-excited while one is dressed as a Moomin. Although saying that, he could just be a hipster.

There’s a man sitting with his wife. His pint of Doom Bar is almost entirely drained, and his arms are crossed helping him cantilever his body weight while he’s drifting in and out of consciousness. It’s 10:12am.

A group of middle aged friends are eating full Englishes and have way too much baggage to have passed through check-in. I’m sure I’ll see them again later, pleading ignorance and bargaining with the flight attendants while trying to avoid paying extra for their double allocation.

What’s the point of me dissecting the demographic of a Wetherspoons you say? I don’t know is my honest answer. I guess there’s something to be said about the familiarity gained from the differences in us all. No matter how many times I come to one of these places, one thing is consistent. We’re all different and at times we’re all the same.

I’ve been in the group of Moomin followers. I’m currently sitting in the solo traveller category, and have been for a year. For now I just want to make the most of this, because going by the speed of the last year, it’ll be no time before I could be sleeping opposite the woman I love, in a public place, full of alcohol at 10am.