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Resting on the journey

China Diary: 2013

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Day 1: Friday, 24th May

Leaving Australia

We have been looking forward to and busy planning our trip to China ever since we came back from Bali last year, but it still came upon us quickly.

It had been a hectic week, Rob just got back from a boy's weekend in Darwin and Clare was not feeling well. There was lots of packing and organising still to do.  But China here we come ready or not. As usual, the flight is early in the morning. The bags were packed the night before. We woke at 5, the start of a long day which will not finish until we arrive at our accommodation after midnight.

The maxi taxi arrived early, and caught us not quite ready. In the rush out the door we were sure we had forgotten something. What we forgot to do was pack enough nappies for the long trip. We had to buy a few extras from the airport baby room dispenser.

Hotel courtyard lanterns

The first flight to Guangzhou of 8 hours went smoothly, and we were pretty proud of how well the kids coped. We had a few hours at the airport before our flight to Beijing. We were transferred through to a transit lounge, where free snacks and drinks were provided. After moving through to the main gate area, we discovered a kids play room, unfortunately it was near the end of our time there. Our boarding was delayed an hour, but that was only the start of it. Once we were on board, it was announced that the flight was delayed a couple more hours. To make matters worse, when that time was up, they added another hour to departure time. Apparently the delay was because of the weather, whatever that means. A little accident made the flight worse. We eventually took off at 11.30,  3 hours late.

We touched down in Beijing at 2.30am, the luggage seemed to take forever to come out. When we finally picked up our bags, there was no sight of the pre arranged driver, he obviously did not hang around. We did not reach our hotel and get to bed until 4.30am. When driving to the hotel there seemed a funny familiarity about the place, maybe it's the familiar Asian feel we have seen so many times before, although the place seemed very neat and presentable, possibly an improvement pay Olympic games. The kids were such troopers during all this, managing to sleep when they could. It was definitely our worst flying experience. Not the best start to the trip.

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