Kate Livingstone: My head is always in the clouds!

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Don’t know about you but I love airports. They signify a journey, hopefully a holiday and a welcome change of scenery.

Admittedly it can be a bit fraught getting everything organised and nowadays the (welcome) security checks mean you have to be in the terminal that much earlier.

But it’s something that really gives me a buzz.

I’m a people watcher you see – and what better place to do it than in an airport.

All these people with all that luggage and you wonder where they’ve been and what they are doing.

The elderly American couple – the red, white and blue sweatshirts give them away – have they been back to trace their ancestral roots in the ‘old country’ or are they just wanting to see the sights and hit the golf courses? Wonder what tales they will have to tell the grandchildren?

The young couple with the toddler and new baby – is it a welcome holiday or perhaps a trip to let relatives meet the new arrival?

Are the groups of females travelling to celebrate an impending wedding or a special birthday – given the amount of prosecco that is being consumed, hope they are not on my flight!

Then there is the anxious looking man with the briefcase who keeps checking the departure board ... important meeting that he doesn’t want to be late for?

I could go on and on – cue my daughter Emma who says “you usually do!”

You can tell I love to be in an airport but not quite as much as friends who, when their children were younger, used to take them for the afternoon as an outing.

Yes that’s right. Take them to the place where lots of other people were going on their holidays, have a wee look round the shops, some lunch and then they got to wave the planes off!

However, I have another friend who is absolutely petrified of flying and it’s certainly getting worse as she gets older.

She says that she doesn’t know how it started as she used to fly off on holiday with her parents when younger and always thought of it as a great adventure but now she will travel by car, train, bus or boat rather than fly.

We did try to persuade her to come with us the last time we had a long weekend in the sun planned but even all the offers to help find a solution to her flying phobia met with a polite refusal.

I just hope none of her family have plans to emigrate!