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Macau misfortune

2 Jan 2010

People say bad things come in three’s, and my daughter and I got a taste of this firsthand during our trip to Macau recently.

Having flown with a local budget airline several times before, we obviously decided to fly the same way this time too. However, our holiday was promptly marred by a rude and disrespectful staffer.

Upon checking in, we were told that the boarding time was 12.30pm. As we headed to the departure gate, with time still to kill, we were told to hurry up as there was already a final call for the flight. Bewildered, we rushed to the gate. Our tickets said T9, but we were being hurried towards T10. Maybe, they had changed it midway.

I told my daughter to run ahead. However, we discovered we were actually among the early ones there! Later, a ground personnel came on board and scolded us for not giving our boarding passes to him at the T9 gate. I told him that there was nobody there to collect our passes. And when my daughter explained that the screen stated T10 was the gate for flight AK54 to Macau, his reply was: “Buat apa tengok skrin tu, dia bukan boleh bercakap!” (What’s the point of looking at the screen, it can’t talk!”)

I felt really let-down and embarrassed by this incident.

Our second piece of bad luck was when we arrived in Macau, only to find that our bags were not on the carousal. We were told that the bags were probably still in LCCT Sepang and would most probably arrive the next day! Imagine our frustration and horror, as my diabetic medication and my daughter’s pills for her low-blood pressure were in the bags!

Just when I thought things couldn’t get any worse, the third misfortune came when we left our hand luggage filled with food and drinks in the scanning machine amidst the confusion over our missing bags. The food was supposed to sustain us for the duration of the trip, as halal food was difficult to find in Macau.

I took all three incidents as a sign that my daughter shouldn’t do the bungee jump she was planning at Macau Tower. But I kept my mouth shut, fearing I might upset her.

Then, Lady Luck decided to smile on us. Upon arriving at the hotel, our room was upgraded to a superior room as the hotel manager felt sorry for us. We were also given vouchers for breakfast and provided with the hotel’s nightgowns as we didn’t have any spare clothes for the night.

The next day, right after my daughter had gone for the much-anticipated jump (safe and sound, thank goodness!), she received a call saying that our bags had arrived. To our surprise, the hotel offered to take us to the airport free of charge!

We spent the rest of the days in Macau trouble-free and came back home with huge grins on our faces. I have learnt a valuable lesson form all this: buy travel insurance, and always carry your medications with you when you travel.

Bibi Sabariah

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