The airport had been shut down. No one was allowed in. Police pointed us along cordoned off walkways, away from Arrivals, away from where my mum would be waiting. We were displaced ants, stumbling confused inside a massive, empty anthill.
D-man was here with me, his first trip to Europe. What a welcome.
We queued as per usual for passport control and customs. People muttered. No one knew what was really going on. No one would tell us. Something about an abandoned car? A car bomb, maybe?
Dusk was falling. Like a scene from a post-apocalyptic film we dragged suitcases up the centre of a road sided by concrete towards silent flashes of blue and the next set of instructions. Neon yellow policemen jackets stood out against the low light greys, orders barking out of big guy mouths.
‘Going saaarf, get in that line. Norf, ova there’. Arms flailed.
I didn’t know how I’d find her, but I did, holding a place in a queue of people trying to push on board a snaking bus.
And finally, after nearly two years, I got my mama cuddle.