Two long haul flights within 8 days is trying. As my parents thoughtfully dropped me off at the airport almost 6 hours prior to my flight, I have time to people watch.
The best place to observe others is of course at arrivals. It seems to be one of the happiest places on earth, despite Disneyland’s counter claims. I love watching the doors open and people pour out. They often look tired and worn down but there is a light that turns on in their eyes when they spot their friends or family members. Last time I was in Heathrow waiting for someone, I got distracted by a family waiting. There was a mother and three young children, probably between the ages of about 3 and 8. A man in an army outfit, presumably the father, came through the arrival doors and the three young children started running towards him, he bent down and caught them as they leapt into his arms. The mother quickly caught up with them and joined in, all crying. To be honest, I cried too.
I find departures less heart warming. Of course, there are people going on holiday and buzzing around excitedly. But if you look closely, you will also notice families and couples separating, saying goodbye. There are long hugs, lingering kisses and tears of sadness in the departures area.
You also see the most curious behaviour in an airport. For example, there is a woman sat near me wearing 3 floppy beach hats on her head, one on top of the other. It’s -5C outside. I also just saw a woman walk past wearing open toe sandals, a cocktail dress and a fake fur coat that looks like a dressing gown. Odd, as I said.