Friday, March 14, 2008

Traveller's nightmare - lost luggage!

When you travel often, inevitably someone will ask if you had some strange or funny incidents on your travels, usually about lost luggage, turbulence, etc. Well, there is actually one very hilarious incident about a lost luggage. The funny part is that I had not even left the country nor even arrived at the airport and had my luggage lost!

Back in 2002, the MRT had just started a new direct train service from Boon Lay to Changi Airport. Was going to Tokyo and thought why not try out the service. Lugged my luggage to the station and had to transfer at Jurong East for the eastbound train to Changi.

At Jurong East station, by coincidence, a Chinaman (Chinese expatriate working in Singapore) with his wife and child, were beside me on the same platform also heading for Changi Airport with their luggage in tow. We all entered the same cabin but sat opposite each other.

At the time when this new train service started, the train had specially installed racks for bags and luggage near the doors. I placed my Samsonite on the rack and the Chinaman placed his 2 bags beside it.

Further along at Tiong Bahru Station, the Chinaman's wife and child got off the train. When it departed, the Chinaman suddenly realised that his wife was still holding on to his train ticket.
In a panic, he started asking around if anyone had a mobile phone he could use, to call his wife. The only one who had, said that unfortunately he had to get off at the next station which was fast approaching. So the Chinaman said that he would get off with the kind young man to use his mobile phone.

When the train stopped next at Outram Station, the Chinaman grabbed his 2 bags from the rack and got off the train. I know you're thinking.... he took my bag, but no, hee hee. ....wait for it...

There was a young lady with her boyfriend seated next to me. And just at the moment that the train sounded "Doors are closing", I heard her say to her beau " Hey!, he left his bag behind!!"
In a flash, she got up, rushed across aisle, grabbed MY bag and tossed it out the door just a fraction before the doors slammed shut!

"That's mine!", I screamed. We both looked at each other, the girl red with embarrassment and I red and flustered. And we could both see the Chinaman outside waving his hands frantically saying "It's not mine! it's not mine" as the train pull away from the station.

Of course, I had to stop at the next station and rode another train back to Outram to pick up my luggage , which luckily the Chinaman had presence of mind to hold for me till I arrived.

That was the only other time I had lost my luggage on my travels.

The next time, I'll tell you about this same Samsonite luggage who decided to go to Hawaii for vacation while I was heading for home from LA