Sydney International Airport has a secret food hall. You can see it but you can’t get to it. It is filled with people eating pies with chips, sandwiches and having coffee. You can walk past the glass enclosure and peer into the zoo of grazing humans.
Having left my home in Wollongong at 3:10*AM to get here for a 7:30AM flight; I am ready to re-caffeinate and eat. I have circled it twice now, hungrier each time. Looking for the hidden door. Looking for the gatekeeper.
As I press my face up to the glass searching for people entering and leaving to get a clue on the entry location, I realise this café is landside not airside. It remains a tempting mirage of reasonable prices. I have crossed over to the place where coffee is $6 not $4 and it’s half the size. Where food is prepacked and at a premium.
The “Rich Zone” with shops I couldn’t afford normally let alone when I have just forked out $2000+ for a flight!
Who shops here? Someone must…
I look at the people around me wheeling their carry-ons. They don’t look like they can afford it either. Granted, the travellers are in their comfy clothes, and not all tracky-dacks are created equal! On closer inspection, they all look like K-Mart leisure suits rather than Armani to me. The target audience must then, be those people spending currencies other than the Aussie Dollar where a $300 shirt becomes a measly(?) $200. I remind myself that my mantra is to spend my cash on experiences and not stuff – the path to true happiness and walk on by.
Defeated in my quest for reasonable prices, I sit down to a $6 coffee and a $6 Danish and while away the time till boarding. Thanks to the fact there was no traffic and I was first in line to check-in that’s two hours away!
(*Yes, you read that right! – traffic around Sydney Airport is unpredictable and the airport shuttle sets the time they will pick you up. Wollongong is a solid hour’s drive away even with no traffic.)