A Cautionary Advice Against China Air

I have never been so insulted on an airplane—and this time I even flew business class!!! God-forsaken China Air has terrible food, terrible stewardesses, and terrible facilities. The only good thing I can say about them is that they are the only airline that can transmogrify a transoceanic journey into a Transylvanian nightmare.

For the moment I sat on my business class couch, I discerned a noticeable difference between China Airways and other prestigious carriers like Singapore, British or American. Thinking that both the attendants and passengers still live under Mao’s Let a Thousand Flowers Bloom nonsense, China Air provided an ample space, which borders Spartan bleakness. Absent are the fresh towels, water bottles or jasmine tea—they just totally forgot that I paid an arm and a limb to get a comfortable seat and that I deserve the service I paid for. Air stewardess who is servicing my aisle is more suited to an aged person’s home than to an airplane cabin; being old and wizened (but not wise), she knocked me—that is to say my shoulder and my foot—at least four times, and never deigned to apologize to her Comrade Passenger. Cabin entertainment is okay, but on my way to latrine (actually during my eternal wait at the latrine door), I noticed that economy class passengers didn’t have a personal TV screen—what? You took like 2000$ from them and didn’t even provide an entertainment system? Wtf?

My only zen moment on the plane occurred as I reposed myself. However, when the waking time arrived, my discontents returned with the lack of morning pack (toothbrush, toothpaste, towel, etc.). I tolerated the absence of the night pack (night cap, ear plugs, head rest, etc.) the previous night, by telling myself old “You have two cows” communism jokes, but with morning sun, my anger reached its boiling point as I learnt they are serving cougee (a Chinese soup into sticky rice was put, which sounds eerily like a breed of dog) instead of a good ol’ continental I was salivating for.

I first think of complaining to the company and to Star Alliance, but I persuade myself against since the Chinese will probably send those responsible to gulags or, worse still, to Tibet. Apart from these hiccoughs, I had good travelling companions. Most of the people on the plane dressed formally and suitably, but the person sitting next to me didn’t. We chatted a little and it turned out that he belongs to the IKEA clan—jean-clad teenager that he is, he is still the grandnephew of IKEA man. Another man sitting near us is a Kentucky businessman (no, he is not in fried-chicken business). He actually makes his living by selling beach-cleaners—for Christ’s sake, I can’t imagine who came up with such machines or who wants to buy them. Yet it will probably be more comfortable riding a beach-cleaner than a China airway jet.


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