Well, I’d wanted to write more about the trip to Xiamen yesterday, but traveling got in the way. We were supposed to take a China Airlines flight from Xiamen at 3:30 pm yesterday, and arrive in Beijing at 6:15 pm. That isn’t what happened. Instead, we were held at the gangway and then at the tarmac before finally taking-off. After that, we were put into a holding pattern around Beijing before being diverted to Shenyang.
The flight attendants told us that we might just be there for a bit, before trying to fly into Beijing. This didn’t sound logical to me. I mean, we’re not flying with Ryan Air… folks would want to at least checkout the plane before we were once again in the air. And, well, we did end-up getting herded into buses and brought into the terminal… where there were already pretty irate passengers communicating with the airport staff.
After awhile, we were once again loaded onto buses and returned to the plane. We arrive at the airport around 2 am. Tons of folks arriving about the same time. Huge queues for taxis and buses. Oh, yeah, it was raining. Hard. As in, hard enough to have been used the reason given why the planes had been diverted.
So, we took a bus to a place near our house. Shanshan had the sense to call a friend who provided a driver to meet us. While we were waiting in the pouring rain, we and the other unlucky souls who had been deposited at the San Yuan Qiao were hit-up by taxis (legit and not) offering to take folks to their destination for around 150 RMB per person (the ride probably would’ve been around 20-30 RMB under normal conditions). And, of course, they wouldn’t just take one person. Yep, what they were doing was illegal. But, nope, it didn’t stop them.
In any event, we arrived at the house at 3:30 am. Soaking wet, but in good spirits.
btw, at no time did the pilot or co-pilot address us. Or, for that matter, did anybody above front-line support get involved. No form of compensation was offered. (It is worth noting that the flight attendants were very professional.)