After the two-hour delay in leaving Sydney the plane broke again when we arrived in Singapore at 1am. Instead of having a short break in SIngapore tp make up time for our arrival in Heathrow, we had four frigging hours in a horrible gate lounge at Changi, having gone through security, and being without coffee, food or even water. Eventually they did bring us some snacks and water, told us it would be at least one hour longer and allowed us to leave the secure area (although we had to go through all the checks and the X-ray when we returned). We headed for the Qantas lounge, but we'd no sooner got there than they told us the flight was boarding.
Thirteen hours later (32 hours after we'd left home), we landed at Heathrow, much too late for us to make our connecting flight out of Gatwick, a two-hour drive away. We'd missed the bus we'd so organisedly booked to take us to Gatwick, and we'd missed the flights we'd already checked in for at Gatwick. And we felt like shit. Basically we'd had 24 hours without sleep, followed by thirteen hours of dozing sitting up. So we got the bus bookings changed (extra ten pounds), got to Gatwick - luckily within two hours of our original checkin-time which mean that we could change our bookings for a measly 50 pounds each. (Qantas couldn't help because the only airline that flies direct to Palma isn't a member of IATA, but our insurance should help.) Our choices were to spend 7 hours hanging round Gatwick, with no lounges, and arrive at Palma at midnight; to book in to an airport hotel and catch the 5.40am flight with no breakfast and no food on the flight; or to book in to an airport hotel and catch the midday flight the next day. No brainer, really.
So we have spent a night in the extremely comfortable Sofitel at Gatwick, having lain down all night in a soft white bed, having showered, having eaten a delicious simple meal made with real food, and are anticipating a tasty fresh breakfast, none of which will arrive wrapped in plastic.
Then on to Palma.