Day 13 – Saturday 22nd June- Beijing to Sydney
A quick debrief on yesterday, we were all very tired by the time we got to the Beijing Airport so now some observations on what happened.
We arrive at the airport, it’s enormous, and Beijing will have another airport finished next year which will be the largest in the world. Michael, our guide is still with us and gets us sorted at the Qantas Checkin desk but we are early and have to unpack, repack with shopping, lock up the bags again, get changed for the plane and cold weather back home, life is tough eh.
We get checked in, say goodbye to Michael, he has been fantastic, very honest, very informative, and can still do the travel company line.
We’re in through the first immigration bit, then customs when the Mechanic causes the Navigator to almost have a heart attack, again, over a passport issue. Genelle is busy emptying drinks, food, old deodorant etc out of her carry on backpack and Mark is sorting stuff out before we go through security, ready to go and he can’t find his passport, meanwhile I’m through but have my bag pulled out for a rescan and also I have the pleasure of another frisk from a non smiling officious young girl because my knees set the bells ringing, again.
Anyway, all ends up good, his passport was knocked off the table and was on the floor, if he hadn’t found it he’d have been in limbo land – though immigration but not through customs. Our gate is E 12 in Terminal 3, we have to take a train to the terminal, that’s how far away it is. By now The Sparks’s toes and feet are swollen, I can hardly walk and it feels like my feet are going to explode – must be the circulation issue the Chinese doctor said is my problem. Maree from the trip gives me a celery tablet which is meant to help with fluid reduction, it’s a diuretic and I know it’s working because I nearly wear my sandals out walking to the toilet on the plane.
It’s nice to get on a plane and know 34 other people well and another 26 or so we know a bit, although the plane is 1/2 an hour late leaving so it’s after midnight when we leave, I take a few pain killers and am asleep before they bring the gin and tonic and the food, but as usual it’s a very difficult sleep.
Sydney finally arrives, we do the zombie walk out through immigration and customs after buying some cheap grog in duty free.
It’s been a great trip, we have met some lovely people and the trip has been an absolute pleasure. Much better than I expected. We say our final good byes once we’re through customs and head to the Holiday Inn for a shower and a rest. Dinner at the hotel and I reckon we’ll sleep the sleep of the dead tonight.
A final sum up when I have regained composure, got my sleep debt sorted, and I’ve had some clear air to look back on the trip, it’s pluses and it’s minuses. Cheers from Sydney
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