Beijing: Welcome to Red China

On my final morning in Japan I lugged my bags over to Kyoto station and caught a train to Osaka Kansai airport for my late afternoon flight to China. Knowing I would soon be stuck behind the great firewall, after checking my bags my next priority was to find some free wifi and get my last fix of social media. Thankfully this turned out to be fairly easy, and I spent an hour or so making final contact with friends and making sure I had everybody’s email addresses so that I could stay in touch during my 3 weeks in China. I left it quite late to go through security, unsure as to whether there would be wifi on the other side. As my flight drew nearer I finally persuaded myself to let go of the internet and go through airport security. When I arrived at the correct security gate, liquids and tablet in hand, I discovered that they were not providing free ziplock bags for your liquids. They directed me downstairs to a drug store where I could buy one. So, rather briskly, I headed down to the shop, and bought a ziplock bag. I rushed back upstairs and across the airport to security, anxious that time was now running quite short. As I unpacked my belongings into the plastic airport security tray a chill ran down my spine. Where was my purse? I knew it had been in my hand when I first approached security. I frantically checked my bag and my pockets but it was gone. In my haste, I must have left it downstairs in the shop. So for the second time that afternoon, I dashed across Osaka airport, now panicked both due to the lack of time, and the possibility that I may never be reunited with my purse (containing many, although not all of my cards – I’m not THAT stupid!). When I got to the shop the girl, who had served me previously, looked relieved and together we ran up the escalator to the information desk where she had handed it in. I breathed a deep sigh of relief as the lady handed me back my purse. But time was now running desperately short and so I ran back over to security for the third time. Red faced and out of breath, I put my belongings into the security tray and headed through. They had a pretty good look at my e-cigarette and the spare oil I brought for it, but let me through no problems. I made it to my gate about 5 minutes before boarding. Turns out there was free wifi on the other side.

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