Diverted by Typhoon to Osaka
Osaka Travel Blog› entry 3 of 23 › view all entries
Notwithstanding landing at Osaka's Kansai Airport in the aftermath of the typhoon in Tokyo, we stayed on the plane on the tarmac for 3 and a half hours. Ugh. I had another meal (ramen noodles with pork cutlet -- actually quite good), a little sake, and slept some more. Finally, a decision was made that we could not get back to Tokyo, so the pilots parked the plane at a gate and they released us to the terminal.
It was 10:00pm local time when we finally got off the plane. What a zoo! There were dozens of flights that had been diverted to Osaka, and no hotel rooms available for anyone. JAL did a horrible job of telling the passengers how they were going to handle the problem and what we should do. I wandered around for about an hour trying to get information and get re-booked to Hong Kong to make my connection to Bali. People were lined up 25 deep around every counter. It was chaotic -- people were screaming, crying and angry. Knowing there was little I could do, I convinced one of the JAL employees to open up the First Class Lounge to let some of us stay in there. We were finally given sleeping bags, a steamer of rice with egg and salmon, and a bottle of water while we waited for news.
I finally got re-booked on a Japan Asia Airline flight to Hong Kong, via Taipei. It was through the JAL employee that had opened the lounge for me. He seemed to be the only one that could get anything done! I took his card and later wrote a letter of commendation to his employer for his service. He also found me a couple of little bottles of Chivas scotch whiskey -- so that helped me finally get to sleep that night. I bunked down in one of the recliner/massage chairs in the lounge and got some sleep.