06 March 2006

Transit blues...

Having wrestled with the really tiny seats on board a China Airlines Airbus A300, I now find myself in an airport in Taipei, awaiting my flight to San Francisco (which should be in about 3 hours time).

Webcams are fun!

I didn’t take any pictures during the flight here, mostly because I wasn’t really in the mood. The first problem was that the seats were really small (wait, I’ve already said that…). Now, I don’t mind if a seat is a bit on the narrow side or if it doesn’t offer enough under-thigh support, but I swear that these seats were designed for midgets.

Or Chinese.

The headrest stopped exactly where my neck began, which is quite annoying if you’re the sort of person who’d like to have a headrest behind your head (especially when you’re going to be sitting there for at least 4 hours).

This made sleep a near impossibility. BUT, being the sort of person who can fall asleep on top of a small bed of rocks, I could somehow manage.

What I couldn’t manage, though, were the two old aunties sitting directly behind me – shouting to their friends across the cabin in Mandarin. With squeaky voices. Ugh…

Normally, I’d be able to tolerate this too, but the two old ladies also appeared to be deaf – screaming at the top of their lungs to each other. At point blank.

Now, even this is tolerable – but that’s before they actually disagree on something. That’s when the Mandarin goes up a couple of pitches and the volume goes up to eleven.

The other problem, of course, is that the two ladies tended to disagree on lots of things.

What I then had were a couple of screeching banshees behind my ears, while I was trying to fall asleep on a seat which didn’t know what to do with my head.

Oh, and I almost forgot – I’ve still got the stiff neck from Thailand. Still can’t turn around nor look upwards either.

And now, here I am sitting in a waiting lounge for my flight trying to kill some time. Thank God they’ve got a free WiFi connection here.

I’m not even sure what’s the proper name of this airport so I’ll just call it Taipei airport for now. The thing about Taipei airport is that it’s really big, really new and really quiet.

If you thought our KLIA was under patronised, you haven’t seen nothing yet.


Mind you, this shot was taken at 8:30pm - usually the busiest times for an airport. Maybe it's just this terminal - there seemed to be more life in the other terminal (where I had arrived from)

The other thing about Taipei airport is that it has an obscene number of duty free shops selling really expensive stuff. Bvlgari, Salvatore Ferragamo, Gucci, Chanel, et al are all here, and – just in case you can’t walk – there are several outlets placed within a stone’s throw of one another.

The other other thing about this blasted airport is that there’s nothing to do. Apart from the airline lounges and toilets, you’ll have to keep yourself amused through other means – such as blogging. But what’s really strange about this place is the near total absence of food / drink outlets.

There’s a tiny noodle bar nearby but when I followed some signs saying “Restaurants”, I ended up reaching the other end of the terminal, with a fresh set of “Restaurants” signs pointing to opposite direction (where I’ve just come from). And when I followed these signs, I ended up at the original “Restaurant” signs, which I had initially followed.

Should I follow the signs again?


Maybe I’ll just save money, go hungry for a bit. Hopefully they’ll serve some food on the plane before bedtime.

Ok, I’m done.


Emily said...

The empty terminal reminds me of horror type video games, like the Resident Evil series with the odd patrons as zombies lurking around aimlessly waiting for fresh meat =D

mel said...

Tried sms-ing you to see if you arrived at SF ok. I guess u can't sms out of Taipei?

I have a good solution to Cina Peks (and Cina Lians). Just gag them with your smelly socks.

mel said...

Oh got yr sms...better start shopping ard for another "Mist" spray, or its alternative. Btw, VS is having sale :O

Chris Chong said...

Landed in Terminal 1 in Taipei on my way back... and it's much busier (and older).

No zombies in the corridors there!