Vancouver, B.C.'s landing was a great and I was now full of excitement...to arrive in Hong Kong!!!
Vancouver Travel Blog› entry 3 of 25 › view all entries
I landed in Vancouver on December 25th, 2007. What a day to be by yourself :( ... I immediately phoned home to my family to hear their voices, a special day that we're always together :( ... Christmas! I took photos at the Vancouver Airport, picked up my luggage, phoned home, & later sat and enjoyed a cup of coffee in the airport. I was at the GATE early since this was an international flight though staff said to wait until they annouced people to board. I walked around, still excited inside, took more photos (waiting impatiently lol) and then we finally boarded at 4:30pm onto Hong Kong Oasis flight O8 901.
Sat down and introduced myself to a guy (about 16yrs) who was going to HK to meet up with his brother & father; he was sitting next to me for the flight. At 5:15pm, 6:00pm, then 6:30pm the flight still hadn't 'lifted'. Hmmmm, everyone wondered 'what was up'? Pilot annouced that the flight would leave a bit later than planned & thanked everyone for waiting. Then 7:00pm, 7:30pm, and 8:00pm came, clearly something was up.
The pilot announced how the tanks weren't near to being filled to capacity and that a technician was coming to open up the gas tanks. Everyone looked at each other ... got up, walked around, called loved ones, we were all a bit shaken and for this mishap we were all given chocolate bars etc.
I couldn't believe how long it was taking but again the pilot came on and appoligized but said 'unfortunately it will still be another half hour at least as the tanks still need to be topped up to make it across the Pacific'. Nice, I thought, thanks for the info. now everyone is getting anxious/nervous! His words echoed a nervousness within me but I just sat back and crossed my fingers!
It's now 8:30pm, 4 hrs have now passed since the flight should have taken off, things seemed to be looking great, we all settled into our seats, fastened our seat-belts, flight began to move then it stopped; pilot announced: 'sorry, because of the change in weather the planes wings will now have to be de-iced before take-off'.
Unfortunately, we don't arrive at 10pm (Dec.26th-as scheduled) HK time but rather 3:15am (Dec. 27th) HK time ... tired and lost, the guy I met on-board asked if he could 'stick around' with me until he met up with his brother. We both followed the crowd to pick-up our luggage and minutes later he met up with his older brother, though before they left ... they waited and saw me off in a taxi and I waved good-bye!
I felt strange, alone, and scared being in a different country; on top of that the cab driver over-charged me .
Went back to the front desk, asked for change (bottled water cost $12HK) went out only to return in to tell the clerk the machine was all taped up ... my room smelt smoked in, I had booked non-smoking ... I felt so alone now and no-one seemed to understand ... a bit emotional (trying to conceal it) a young lady walked up to me and asked if she could sit ... she said she was from UK and insisted that she stay with me until I felt OK. Found out it was her wedding night, of all nights to be empathetic to a total stranger ... she got the staff to write the cab's licence, asked that they provide a softdrink and water bottle since their machine was out-of-order, and had my room changed (it was clean/fresh).
Exhausted, I finally fell to sleep around 5am (HK time). This was going to be a flight to remember ...
I quickly went to her room before she left, holding a Canadian souvenir for her, just a small token of appreciation for her self-less time she spent with me, ensuring I was OK before she headed back to bed ... Knocked on her door and thanked her so much, then before I left she said "Wait" ... she went back into her hotel room and returned to her door and handed me a Dozen Red Roses from her wedding, I didn't want to take her wedding roses, but she insisted I have them ... they stayed in my room the whole 3 days that I was there alone, but now I didn't feel alone .