Sunday, August 26, 2007

Long Haul

I’m at Hong Kong airport: it’s all shiny and lush and arched and grey and matt and I can’t find anything. I suspect I am in the wrong terminal, but when I asked, the charmingly sweet Information girls just giggled and agreed with everything I said – in the Asian style, which really could mean anything at all. There’s free Wi-Fi (doh! Obviously!) but it’s so slow – I am writing this blog rather than watching the wheel spinning over at Yahoo… arrggghh….

What I really need is to go to the loo. This is the one major drawback of travelling on your own: I will now have pack away my stuff and take everything with me and, no doubt, loose my nice table with the attractive view over the terminus… right. No point in putting it off! Here we go…

I have decamped and retreated to the dusty corners of Gates 1-4. It’s quieter here and more in keeping with my state of mind. Sadly there are no tables, so my laptop really is. Fortunately after my sojourn in the home of real ale, I am now able to balance my laptop on my ample tummy. Curses.

A few words about the signposting of Hong Kong airport: I believe it is designed to wind you up. They signpost really well… up to a point, then they stop. When I arrived I suspected I might have ended up in the wrong terminal (caused by several mishaps involving confusing signposting and over zealous staff). So when I saw a sign saying “Transfer Help Desk”, I thought that would be my first port of call. I following the sign to the left, I saw another pointing straight on and so continued. Then nothing. Nothing that looked like a help desk anyway. There was a large silver bean on a pedestal (oh how I love modern airports, with their surreal concept art – more cruelty to be inflicted on the long-haul passenger, anxiously rubbing our weary eyes: “Does it mean coffee?” we ask in bewilderment.) I turned in a slow circle, looking for a sign or some inspiration. I saw a sign, which read “Airline Services Desk”. “They might know” I mutter to myself hopefully, so I set off, to the right, then straight on, until there are no more signs… once more a slow circle reveals only one helpful sign: “Transfer Help Desk” it reads.

Upstairs there’s a food court (from where this post began) I ate some nasty fast food. It was a burger or noodles and I am putting off the realisation that everything I eat for the next 6 months will come with rice or noodles for as long as possible. Although, as I write this, watching my computer wobble in front of me I think it must be a good thing.

One hour to go until my next flight: just time for another Killer Sudoku.

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