Whether my flight was still scheduled to depart on-time?
Sure, but only after I went to ESPN.com to see if the Blackhawks won, and upon learning the shocking way they did, to watch the highlights of the tying and winning goal.
I wish I had seen it live, and perhaps technically I could have had I found an all-night sports bar in London with satellite TV.
But getting some sleep before making my way to Heathrow was a good choice.
I was booked onto a 10:30am flight to JFK and would have had to get to LaGuardia for an evening flight to O'Hare. But once at Heathrow, I was able to get put onto a 12:50pm flight direct from London to O'Hare, schedule to arrive at 3:30pm.
I am writing this from a lounge in Heathrow, but as I already used my allotment of free wifi, won't post this until I am presumably safely back in Chicago.
Anyway, though I'm sorry I missed the Stanley Cup, I'm glad the Hawks wrapped it up before I got back and have no regrets about being in Europe during this championship fortnight.
I had a wonderful time on this trip, which despite persistent pain in my heels--due to some combination of extensive walking, bad shoes, old age and too much weight--was more acutely pleasurable than other European expeditions.
Because I am intent on getting to as many sights as possible, and never content to just sit around, I have enjoyed past overseas trips more in retrospect and memory--both my own and the photos stored on my computer--than in the present tense.
Though at times a bit arduous, this was a really pleasurable trip as I was on it.
I greatly enjoyed all 5 cities I visited and would recommend them all to anyone. But I guess I'd say my biggest surprise was how much I liked Krakow.
I had read good things about it, but somewhat perceived it as a place to visit surrounding a jaunt to Auschwitz, which for some reason I wanted to see.
But though unlike London, Vienna and Paris, I saw no great art or iconically historic buildings, I really just loved being there and walking around probably more than anywhere else on this trip or in ready memory.
Of course, I loved London and seeing Springsteen at Wembley and Les Miserables and Matilda.
In London I saw the royal family and in Vienna, I saw three grand palaces.
All told I visited 7 art museums.
While fine dining wasn't my focus, I enjoyed some nice meals.
I saw three cities--and many things--I've never seen before, and returned again to my beloved London and Paris.
So despite what I missed at home, I'm glad I went.
But I'm also happy to be home. That's how life should be.