I never thought that something like this would happen to me, but when I arrived at Beijing International Airport a few days ago to travel to Nanning to visit my relatives, I couldn’t believe my eyes. I got out of the car, took both suitcases out of the trunk and start looking for my backpack. OMG, my passport is in my backpack, how am I supposed to fly without identification? I looked at my watch, 12:35, my plane is taking off at 14:00. That’s less than one hour to return home, run up to the 15th floor, get my backpack, run back down and race back to the airport. Did I mention that the traffic in Beijing is incredibly dense?
Well, I instantly jumped back into the car and drove back to my home. If anyone has been to China before, they know how crazy the traffic is here: Big trucks driving really slow on the overtaking-lane, a whole bunch of beginners blocking two lanes at the same time and everyone too lazy to use their turn signal when changing lanes. Trying to get through all this is nearly impossible, but I had to try.
Once arrived at my home, I jumped out of the car, ran back to my home, up 15 floors, got the backpack, 15 floors back down and right back to the car. Running this much in Germany wouldn’t be a problem, but in Beijing, with the extremely thick air, it’s hard to breathe enough oxygen.
The time shows 13:05 now, only 25 minutes left until check-in ends. I felt my heart pumping more and more adrenaline in my blood. 10 minutes later, traffic jam! I couldn’t believe it! Why now? It’s lunch time, everyone should be sitting somewhere eating, not blocking my way to the airport! I took my phone out and called someone I know at the airport. “Get to the check-in gate for Hainan Airlines and tell them that I’ll be 5 minutes late! Try to check in for me. My passport number is…” – 2 minutes later – “No can do! They need to see your passport first!” – “Okay, get me a spot at the counter so I don’t need to wait!” Luckily, the traffic jam only lasted for a few minutes. At 13:20, the road was empty again. No time for speed limits now! 140km/h, 150km/h, 160km/h… OMG, a huge truck driving only 80km/h just switched from the rightmost lane to the leftmost right in front of me. The brakes squeaked and we stopped 5cm before the truck. Phew…
At 13:35 I finally arrived at the terminal. 5 minutes too late, will they still let me in? I dashed as fast as I can to the counter and showed the lady at the check-in counter my passport. She quickly checked my passport and gave me my boarding pass, which she had already prepared, tagged my luggage as extra urgent and told me to take it to the overweight luggage check-in so they can bring it on the plane real quick. I was so relieved.