You never know what’s going to happen when you travel internationally. Richard and I proved this exact point on our latest trip back to the USA.
We figured we’d just record the traveling from our home in Korea to the airport we were flying from, and try to make it interesting for you guys. And, while doing so, something happened to us that has never happened to either of us before: We lost our PASSPORTS at the airport in Korea!
It’s actually a really good system Korea has set up for people living everywhere in this country. Prior to 2001 when Incheon International Airport was opened, Gunpo airport was the way to get into and out of Korea when traveling. This airport is still in operation, and is closer to Seoul, but wasn’t big enough to handle all the traffic Korea now has coming from all sorts of different countries. So, they made plans to open Incheon Airport. Incheon is a fantastic airport with all the services and amenities that travelers could ask for. The only downfall that most people can see is the distance it is from Seoul and everything else. It’s way out there. In order to combat against this obvious disadvantage, the airport limousine service was created to assist all passengers with travel to and from Incheon International Airport.
We live about 2 hours from the Incheon Airport. Is it hard to get there? No. Is it easy to get there? It’s not difficult, but it does take being organized and knowing the airport limousine bus time tables and where to pick them up. In order to get to the bus station with all our luggage, we need to first get a taxi to take us there. Because of where we live, there’s a airport limousine bus station near our home, but there is no way we could walk there with our luggage. It would take probably abut an hour with no luggage! So we hail a taxi and load that baby up! Once at the station, airport limousine tickets cost 12,000 Won a piece, which ends up being about $11 US. Not bad for an hour long trip to the airport in air conditioning.
So yeah, just a routine trip back to NY and Pennsylvania almost got really, really scary. This is what happened. We left the house and hailed a taxi to go to the bus station where we could pick up an airport limousine to the Incheon airport. That all went off without a hitch. After arriving at the airport we were starving, and because we had some extra time we grabbed some lunch first. Afterwards we checked our luggage and received our boarding passes all the way home. We made it through security and passport control, and stopped after that to shoot video of ourselves. We finished the video and headed towards our gate. Within 15 second of leaving that area Richard abruptly stopped and checked his pockets. The passports were missing!
We frantically searched the bags to no avail. They were gone. We could see where we had just come from and they weren’t on the floor there either. We were freaking out. Right then we heard my name of the loud speaker! They had been recovered!!! It was only a matter of minutes. Richard retrieved them from the information desk around the corner and normality was restored.
You see, normally we record from our home because we mostly focus on dramas and that’s where it’s easiest to make a good video. We’ve gone outside to shoot video before about various things, but haven’t done so for Hallyu Back recently, at least not with any of our main shows. While shooting that one video he had set them down on his carry-on luggage, and when we stopped recording he never grabbed them as we left. That was the fatal error. I think trying to shoot video while carrying lots of luggage and all the other factors that go into international travel, and something like this seems a bit more plausible.
I’m so thankful that nothing terrible happened from our mishap. There are still good people out there in the world. Some kind soul saw our passports sitting on the floor unattended and returned them to the information desk immediately. Thank goodness for such honest people. It does give me faith that people are out there doing the right thing with so much trouble in the world. That situation could have easily turned into a nightmare, and instead they were only missing for about 5 minutes. And even that was enough to scare the sh*t out of anyone.
Routine trip to the US? No. Exciting video? It could have been worse. Much, MUCH worse! ^o^