rice cake confessional

adventures in eating

how to get to singapore in 40+ hours

with 2 comments

Yah it’s kind of lame of me to not update for a month and then update with a non-food post. I’ll try to pay the internet world back in spades with plenty of food pictures from the holidays after I get this rant off my chest and outta my head. For strictly food fans, you can skip. Here are the chronicles of my journey back to Singapore.

5:22am PDT: Leave Hanford by car with the fam and head to SFO to catch11:55am flight. We leave super early since my parents are those lets-get-to-the-airport-4-hrs-early types. It’s still pitch black and cold as all get out. I give two big hugs to Brother #1 who has work and can’t come.

6:13am PDT: Give in to the sleepies and take a nap in the car. On long haul flights I generally don’t sleep the night before. The car nap was the first shut eye of the day.

6:48am – 7:30am PDT: Wake up periodically to tell Dad that his speedy driving is freakin’ me out.

8:22am PDT: Arrive at SFO 1 hour earlier than expected. Whoops. We’re super early. I check in and we grab overpriced breakfast at the airport.

10:30am PDT: Notice that my monitors say my flight is leaving 10 minutes early. Decide to trek through security and say goodbye to the fam – hugs for everyone. Blink away goodbye tears. Give extra big hug to Mom bc she worries a lot when I’m faraway.  😦

11:45am PDT: Not boarding yet…. weird.

12:15pm PDT: Have to bother dude next to me to help me load my backpack into the bin. Him and the 5 other guys in the same vicinity are all OFW types headed back to the Philippines. They ask if I’m Filipino, I say yes. They laugh and in Tagalog joke to each other and say ‘oh she’s Filipino, we thought she wasn’t hahahaha ok which one of us is the handsome one?’ Am disturbed by this but ignore it since 1) I’m sleepy and 2) they helped me with my bag. BTW, the answer is none. As in none of them were handsome.

1:00pm PDT: Awake from nap to find… we’re still in SFO. Capt says that the engine won’t start. We’re apparently at the foot of the runway ready to take off but the engine has to be started from the ground crew and it is just not happening. They’re working on it though. Oh well. Back to sleep.

1:30pm PDT: Still in SFO.

2:00pm PDT: Ok, seriously. Why are we still in SFO and why are we in this plane still?

4:00pm PDT: Yay, we’re HK-bound finally. First meal is a choice between meatloaf and mashed potatoes or teriyaki chicken and rice. I go for the meatloaf. It tastes like the TV dinners from my youth. Yum.

7:00pm PDT (prolly): Wake up to find Filipino Dude #2 (who has the window seat, I’m sitting in the aisle) stepping on the armrests to get to the aisle. No lie. I wake up to find him stepping over me with one foot on the middle arm rest and one foot on my arm rest. WHO DOES THIS? Is this what people do now? If so, it’s weird and undesireable.

8:00pm-ish HKT: Go to lavatory. There’s  no more water to wash your hands. They have hand sanitizer instead. Ew.

10:00pm HKT (prolly): We make it to Hong Kong with no other incidence. Thank goodness. The Capt says that the connecting flight to Singapore has been held for us so we should make it to Singapore just fine.

who knows what time HKT: Go through security AGAIN and end up at my gate but we’re not boarding. Peer at the monitors but can’t tell what time it is. Interestingly enough it says the flight is leaving at 22:30 and there is a big 20:00 in the top corner. I thought te 20:00 was the time for a minute. Then I realized that the time wasn’t changing…

12mn HKT (roughly): Sittin’ in the plane. Nice Indian man helps me with my heavy backpack. More sleepies so I settle in and take another nap.

?? HKT: Capt says that they’re having electrical issues and that they’re working on it. Should be another 30-45 minutes.

?? + 45 minutes HKT: Capt tries the engine again. No go. All the lights on the airplane go out a few times. Off and on. Off and on. Air turns off for awhile. It’s getting uncomfortabley stuffy.

?? + 90 minutes HKT: More trying of the engine. Flight attendents give people flashlights so that they could still use the lavatories. Ghetto. They serve snackboxes of smoked salmon sandwiches and unidentifiable cheese. There’s also some Lay’s BBQ chips and an almond cookie in there. They run out of bottled water. People are starting to try to leave the plane. Too bad they can’t since the jetway isn’t even connected. Have made friends with Indian dudes in my row and the row behind me. They say that the Chicago flight that also feeds into HK had a 1 hour delay bc some guy on the plane had a stroke. I share my SFO troubles.

4:00am-ish HKT: Capt apologizes profusely as do the flight staff who are all really embarassed. Flight is officially cancelled. Non-feeling HK customer service agent fumbles the announcement. Makes it sound like we’ve inconvenienced him. I think the Capt made him get back on the loudspeaker and thank the passengers for being so patient.

4:30am HKT: Still on the freakin’ plane. They’re holding us up bc there are not enough rooms at the airport hotel AND there aren’t enough immigration staff to process us.

5:23am HKT: Have made it through immigration (had to bum pen off co-worker’s son who was also on the flight). Note to HKIA: Restock your freakin’ pens! Struggled with my 50lb bags at baggage claim. Rip one of the stand thingies on the bottom of one of the bags. Now waiting in line at the United counter to try and get a flight out. I forgo the airport hotel business. I figure they don’t have enough rooms, I’m awake due to jetlag, and the chances of them calling me while I’m at the hotel are slim.

5:30am HKT: Everyone finds out that the counter doesn’t open until 8am. This means none of us are getting on the SQ flight that leaves at 8am. Grrr. Decide to still wait it out. Talk it up with some Singaporean Stanford alum behind me and a cool SF girl who is en route to Sri Langka to run some survey or other. Have taken to striking up conversation with pretty much anyone and everyone.

7:32am HKT: Ticket counter opens a bit early. I get ignored for a bit but finally get helped. I get put on a list for a Cathay Pacific flight that leaves at 11:35am HKT. I’m told to report back at 9am at the United counter.

8:00am HKT: I’m one of those people who pack extra randomness in my carry on for ’emergencies’. Lo and behold I finally get to use them. I whip out a toilet seat cover, my toothbrush, a few bits of fresh clothes. I silently curse my shopping addiction as I heave my bags off the trolly and into the safety of my bathroom stall. I say silent prayers that no one jacks my trolly while I do my business.

8:3oam HKT: Feeling fresher after the bathroom stop but saddened by the Hui Lau Shan (mango sago)  stall not opening until 11:30am. Sigh, how mango sago would have made things a bit more tolerable. I settle for a chicken teriyaki sandwich thing from Maxim’s bakery. I chomp on goldfish crackers and do more Kindle reading while I wait for 9am to roll around.

9am HKT: United accompanies us to the Cathay Pacific desk. The United guy asks me what my name is to check his list. Have mini heart attack and ponder punching him when he says he can’t find it. Luckily, he finally sees it.

10:00am HKT: I’m one of the first people at the gate but settle in for more reading and half a pop tart. Am in zen-like reading/pop tart mode that is rudely interrupted by very loud Chinese businesswoman speaking on her cell phone. Her other cell phone rings. Her ring tone: Buttons by the Pussycat Dolls. Even though I love that song, I still give her the evil eye for her super unnecessary loudness.

11:20am HKT: Boarding time. Get decent seat next to well dressed Chinese girl. Kinda want to ask her where she got her dress from but refrain bc I’m too tired to care. Get whiff of bad breath from older Chinese uncle jabbering away across the aisle from me. Blech.

3:21pm SGT: YAY! We’ve landed in Singapore.

3:30pm SGT: Capt gets on the PA system. Says that we need to get towed to the jetway. Ugh.

3:40pm SGT: Am going mental. Why am I still in an airplane?!

3:55pm SGT: Standing in line at immigration. Why do I always pick the slowest line?


4:48pm SGT = 12:48am PDT

Total travel time = approx 43 hours

Thank you to my Kindle and for the sandwich bag of goldfish crackers my ma packed for me. They saved the day.




Written by joann

January 11, 2009 at 12:03 pm

Posted in blah blah blah, travels

2 Responses

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  1. For a min I thought the crackers were made of goldfish! err.. are they?

    And yeah, that’s a nightmare of a flight in case you thought I forgot about the rest of the post when I reached the bit about the crackers.


    January 11, 2009 at 7:09 pm

  2. hee hee, naw the goldfish crackers arent made of goldfish. they are a popular snack in the states. these ones are cheddar flavor. can you see that one of them has eyes and a smile?


    January 11, 2009 at 9:05 pm

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