Excess in Japan
We were somewhere around Kamagaya on the edge of Tokyo when the Nurofen began to take hold. The three of us - TV Hits feature writer, Liz McDonald; photographer Taff Manton and myself - were in a taxi travelling at high speed towards Narita Airport in an attempt to catch a flight we had no hope of boarding. Twelve hours earlier, it had all seemed so simple.......
The trip had been a success. The band - Steps - had been taken to the hearts of thousands of Japanese fans. The interview had been flawless. The photos were going to be spectacular. Steptacular, even. Maybe a cover!
It was decided to go out for celebratory drinks. One bar turned into two, and then three. Then we met a very friendly local who called himself Captain Santa and who enjoyed buying drinks for his new friends.
Around 1am, I gently persuaded the team that we should return to the hotel; after all, we needed to be up at 8 to get a coach to the airport for the 12.30pm flight home. On reaching our hotel, we discovered that the bar was still open. A cheeky one was in order. Or maybe a cheeky two.
Miraculously, I woke up at 10am. The sense of panic temporarily overpowered the hangover and I shoved all my belongings into the suitcase in 2 minutes and ran to Taff's room. He was barely awake but had nonetheless managed to register that a minor predicament may be unfolding. McDonald, on the other hand, was fast asleep.
Ten minutes later, McDonald was in a taxi, frantically trying to pack luggage into various carrier bags whilst nursing a headache the size of Mount Fuji. Somehow we made the flight but only because the ground staff at Finn Air (don't ask) took it as a challenge to get these crazy English people on a plane and in the sky 20 minutes after arriving at the check-in desk. I'll always love the Finns.........