I’m always excited to be getting on a plane to some far away place and present my bubble show. Even now, at the end of my long summer season, to do gigs 85 – 100 of my mini world tour there’s something very gratifying about checking in at the airport.
However… things this time, were not to go to plan.
My initial flight was cancelled at the last minute due to ‘technical’ reasons and I was squeeeeezed on to the only other flight to HK that day. The BA lady told me that she wouldn’t recommend BA at the moment, not until they get their new fleet. Apparently this kind of thing happens to them every day at present.
The new flight itself was a bit strange – it took off around 10pm, and they basically treated it as a night flight all the way through the 11 hours to our destination. What made this bizarre was then landing at 7pm when the airline attendants had just woken all the passengers up and given them breakfast.
Somewhat bleary eyed after notching up a 19 hour journey, I stumbled to the conveyer belt to collect my luggage.
1 of my bags came through… I waited.
I spotted a couple of other people from my initial cancelled flight in the same predicament and joined them at the queue for baggage enquiries.
All my equipment – disappeared. My outfits too, some of which are irreplaceable and over 100 years old. I filled out a form and they gave me a pink slip. I met Fenris who was collecting me on behalf of my client,Elaina, and explained what had happened. We then spent a further 2 hours at the airport, as we tried to figure out where the luggage was with the BA customer service managers.
There was of course nothing they could do beyond putting out a search for my lost bags and giving me a paltry £35 to cover any costs incurred as a result of my missing stuff. The other couple were given £60 each, which I was told was because they were in a different class to me. Now not only have you lost my bags BA, but you’re telling me I’m not worth as much as these other customers? Just what I want to hear now, BA, thanks a bunch.
Now I have to deal with the loss of all my equipment AND a panic-y event manager who’s worried about how to appease her client.
Personally when I arrive for a gig abroad, I generally just get straight to my hotel, take a shower, and rest up for a few hours at least. Then I want to prep my kit and take everything in my stride with as much time as possible. It all helps once I actually get up on stage…
So we walk away from the terminal and Fenris casually mentions we’ll be getting the bus to the venue. The bus? Where’s my car, like it says in my rider? No, no he tells me. Bus is much more quick and comfortable… yeah, right! I’m too tired to argue so we get the A12 bus and watch the taxi’s speed by as we drive into Kowloon and beyond. Once I arrive, Elaina meets me and I’m immediately whisked to the stage. As the ‘middle woman,’ it’s kinda understandable that she was freaking out, but at the time, that was the last thing I needed! She rushed me off to a toy shop in the mall where they bought me whatever bubble toys they could find and requested I put something together for the lunchtime show tomorrow which they also inform me is the Press Show too.
No pressure then!
I didn’t know what to say, so I said I’d think about it, and try my best and they took me to the hotel.
I look at the stuff they’ve bought. I had fairly scant equipment in my one bag that arrived, mostly personals. I can’t do it. There’s not enough here to do anything, I can’t even mix my juice properly.
I don’t want to risk looking like an idiot in front of the HK press too, so I sent them an email saying I couldn’t do it. I receive one back insisting I put something together and requesting a meeting with her client at 8.30am.
No way, I say. I politely inform them that if they need my show, they should take it up with BA, and that I need my rest & shall not be available till at least 10.30 tomorrow.
Then i turn off my mobile phone and take the hotel phone off the hook.