Homeward bound - Kano to the UK

Monday 26 September 1960 

We reached Kano airport at 6, my plane not leaving until 8:30 a.m.. My luggage, finally retrieved, weighed 18 kg, just 2 kg under the limit, but a lot of weight in my hand luggage. I was after all returning from several years in the southern hemisphere.

My plane was a.m. not p.m. and I spent the night in the Central Hotel. An hour before my departure a plane arrived loaded with Canadian airmen, in from Tripoli, the blue tummies labelling them as United Nations troops, as had swarmed at Leopoldville in the Congo on my way north.

Our crossing of the Sahara was to Tripoli, through strong air currents, then along the Mediterranean coast. Arrival at Rome was 3 p.m., temperature 58°F. The Alps were magnificent at sunrise. Frankfurt at around 6 p.m. (37°F) and so to merry England.

It was too cloudy to see the familiar green patchwork along the coast. The small crowded London houses around Heathrow came into view at 9 a.m. 28th September, just in time for winter! (56°F) Pale sunshine and the bustle of the once familiar, now strange streets of Ealing. All those wonderful years in New Zealand, Australia and Africa now lay in my past.