Malta's Warmest 'Welcome Home' Moments
Because we all know there's no place like home!
Every Maltese person has their own personal airport memory. From going on your first family trip to Euro Disney, to waving your parents goodbye as you stand for the first time ever on the escalators overlooking the departure lounge. That sense of excitement or even anxiety hits as soon as you exit that familiar last round-about to drive into the Malta International Airport entrance.
But perhaps the most special airport moment has to be looking up through the glass in the arrivals lounge, hoping to see the jubilant faces of your loved ones as they return from their travels. That first embrace as they emerge from the exit doors captures a feeling of joy like nothing else really can.
And that's just on a personal scale. The joy-factor is off the charts when it's a national 'welcome home'. Here’s a list of some of the most memorable homecoming moments that have provided the Maltese public with an overwhelming sense of love and national pride:
An Awesome Eurovision Win
Maltese people have long dreamt of seeing their country win the Eurovision Song Contest, and while we may not have much luck at the main event, our young representatives are absolutely killing the game!
Destiny emerged victorious from the airport gates, and was greeted by a whole party of screaming family, friends and fans!
Enter the heroes
The Lifcycle Challenge is a yearly event that sees a dedicated team of Maltese cyclists covering 2,000km over 10 days to create awareness and raise funds for patients suffering from end stage renal diseases.
Ever since the first event in 1999, the Lifecycle challenge has been garnered more attention from the Maltese public, and a tearful welcome back at the airport is now an integral part of the annual tradition.
A captive returned
Martin Galea, a Maltese oil worker based in Libya, was kidnapped for a gruelling 11 days back in July 2014. The horrible story kept the whole country and the government on edge for almost two weeks.
Luckily, Galea was released to the Maltese consulate in Tripoli and he returned to the Malta International Airport where he was welcomed by a sea of reporters, his family, and in a show of solidarity, Malta's Prime Minister.
All hail Ira!
And the mother of all Maltese homecomings is Ira Losco’s triumphant return to a rock buzzing to the lyrics of 7th Wonder. Losco represented Malta in the Eurovision Song Contest in Tallinn in 2002, where she placed second Malta’s highest position in the contest at the time (a placement we're yet to beat!).
Ira arrived to an actual sea of adoring fans that clamoured and crowded the entire Arrivals Lounge and outside areas of Malta International Airport (you're gonna want to skip to 17:45 to watch Ira wading through the crowds at the airport).
And despite the fact that she had a modest showing at this year’s Eurovision Song Contest, Ira hasn’t lost any tact by attracting a sizeable crowd upon her arrival once again.
Look who's coming to town...
All homecomings are magical, but a bearded man in a red suit has to take the prize for the most heart-warming.
This scenes from Father Christmas' arrival at the airport is like sugar and butterflies sprinkled on the heart. Makes you wish it could be Christmas everyday right?