Beijing Taxis

When I arrived at the Beijing 🇨🇳 P.R.C. airport customs… in May of 1995, the officer decided that since the computer screen for my computer was not attached to my computer I would have to pay U$ 300 .. so I had to get cash at the airport bank, bring it back, pay him and then enter officially…the person who was supposed to see me was not there… So my 5 items of luggage went looking to go to China Daily… I had a letter in English… with the address and logo of China Daily…
The airport was almost empty other than a few taxi drivers… one seemed to understand English… he looked at the paper and by conversation I believed he understood where to go…
My cart of stuff and I were escorted to his cab… a regular looking car… by himself and a buddy???
Suddenly the cab ride became a two car trip…
I refused.. and I loaded all the bags into one car… and away we went…
With the second car following…
We arrived at…..
A hotel with the same name as the China Daily publication I was to work for…
As printed in the letterhead of my letter…
21st Century ….
(China Daily’s English language paper for the education sector…)
There the doorman actually spoke enough English that he told me and the driver of the error.. checked the China Daily address …
and away the two cars, two drivers, all my bags and I…

15717960297_553317a228_c_d

We arrive at the offices of China Daily late at night.. and there is no security guard… no doorman… but the front door is unlocked….
I walk in looking around…
pass the wooden staff mailboxes on the wall in the front lobby..

273653215_ad7ab87e27_o_d

Not a live human being to be seen but I and the two taxi drivers….
Then, along a long slopping ramp from the third floor…
A white haired American woman says…
“Hey are you the new guy we were expecting…??”
Yes!

15716427590_682b4d84d0_c_d

The foreign experts manger is quickly roused…
descends form his upper floor apartment …
in glasses, slippers, PJs and a rain coat…
and proceeds to pay both taxi drivers much to my vocal protest…

5123983_b0a9a68947_o_d
And that’s when I am told by Ann Holiday that my taxi ride from the airport is officially the most expensive on record for the 20 or so foreign experts contract to China Daily at that time..

Advertisements
%d bloggers like this: