A Travellerspoint blog

By this Author: eyeprtty2

Plane Ride Back to America

I will let the pictures speak 1000 words...

After dealing with Delta Airlines (see my complaint letter on the last entry) to get a flight out of Shanghai and back to America I had the pleasure of sitting 14 hours with this lady.

And the funny thing is that I was sitting in my assigned seat at the begining of the flight when the little old lady infront of me turned around and saw that the 3 seats next to me were empty. She started rubbing her arm saying she was in pain and wanted to switch seats with me. At first I said no but then I felt guilty and switched. It wasn't 15 minutes later before my new seat mate started snoring in my ear. I sat for a second contemplating my options and decided to turn around and get my seat back. The little old lady moved alright. She scooted down to the end of my row and stretched out over the 3 empty seats so I had the pleasure of sitting with her feet touching my leg for 14 hours. Jared and Melissa found it all rather hilarious.

When I got tired of watching our Farewell DVD over and over again, reading my "No Excuses" book and trying to sleep while babies cried I walked around and took pictures of the lucky soles who were sleeping.

The lady that was snoring was now stretched out too since her orgional seat mate was stretched out next to me. It was just a win win for everyone... but me. IMG_1132.jpg

At least we all got home safely and it sure is good to be back! See below what Melissa's mom made for her when we arrived at the Indianapolis airport at 9:45pm. So cute!


Posted by eyeprtty2 00:31 Comments (0)

Journey Home

Long story short... Here is my letter to Delta Airlines

To Whom It May Concern,

If this letter goes ignored by your company then we will alert every PR and Media resource available until proper action is taken.
On November 23rd, 2010 at 9:10am Melissa Disabato, Kyle Claiborne, Jared Spencer, Blair Andrews and I (Sydney Russell) arrived at the Shanghai Pudong International Airport accompanied by our internship supervisor Mrs. Teresa Shan for our scheduled flight that was to depart at 11:15am. This time was on the itinerary that we printed out directly from Delta Airlines email confirmation.
When we arrived at the Delta check in counter a Mr. Huang Ling Ji, stated that we missed our flight. We assumed that there was a communication error due to the Chinese-English language barrier and protested that we have not missed our flight, that our itineraries clearly have 11:15am on them and that we would like to check in for our flight.

He quickly collected our itineraries and said that there is was no flight at 11:15am, it is at 10:10am and security has closed. At this point we were very unhappy and insisted that there must be an urgent check in process that is available. Mr. Huang Ling Ji just repeated himself and stated that it is not his fault and we will have to wait until the next day for another flight. We then asked to speak to the Manager on duty and Mr. Huang Ling Ji first questioned why we wanted to speak to the manager and after 10 minutes he said that the manager will come after the plane takes off. This was unacceptable because we needed to be on that plane and talk with the manager as soon as possible. The manager never came.
Instead two of us talked to some man on Mr. Huang Ling Ji’s cell phone who claimed to be the manager, yet would not give us his name, and he simply repeated what Mr. Huang Ling Ji said and then hung up on us.

At this point it was now 9:50am, 30 minutes had passed, and a problem that started with a typo on the itinerary now became an issue of blatant disrespect. Our time was wasted. Mrs. Teresa Shan who is a Chinese citizen and who had been witnessing these events started to protest our poor treatment and Mr. Huang Ling Ji responded back to Mrs. Teresa Shan, “You are Chinese! You should be on our side not theirs”. We were all appalled. This now became an issue of deliberate nationalism and unequal treatment. Because we were young American Hospitality and Tourism Management students from Purdue University trying to fly home after living and working in Nanjing, China for the past five months at the Jinling Hotel we were not considered important? Did we not deserve proper customer service? This is what you train your employees to do?
At this point we started taking detailed notes of how we were being treated, took pictures of your staff not serving us instead many of them were scowling at us and we wrote down the names of the workers on duty at that time (some refused to give us their names). We stood at the desk while your employees sat around and had their “Daily Meeting.”

Your employee, Mr. Huang Ling Ji, gave us no options for ratifying your companies mistake, refused us entry on the plane that was not scheduled to leave for another 50 minutes (when we first arrived) and ignored us until 10:10am when the plane that we needed to get on already left the airport. It was not until 10:14am that a Ms. Ying Hu, who I believe was not even an employee of Delta came to our aid and got us on a later flight that was scheduled to leave at 12:00pm.

Your company did absolutely nothing to ratify this situation; your employees offended us personally and caused us to miss our connecting flights to our homes in America. One of the interns, Melissa, risked missing her grandfather’s memorial service because of your companies scheduling error and my father had to arrange a new way to get me home to Cleveland, Ohio from Indianapolis, Indiana (my original destination point scheduled to arrive at 4:35pm was changed to 9:35pm due to a new 6 hour layover in New York).
We were given 60 rmb for food by your company to eradicate the situation but it could only be used in the terminal and by the time your company was done checking us in and finding us new flights it was 11:40am and we were rushed to security and straight on to the plane so we could not use the 60 rmb for food. They knew that we would not have time to use the vouchers and really just passed us on as if these crimes were never committed.

We were put on a China Eastern flight #587 which was an outdated plane, our seats were by the bathroom and they were not the same level of accommodations that we initially reserved and paid for from Delta. A flight that was initially 10 hours was now 14 hours because we had to connect in New York when our original flight connected us in Detroit, MI.

All of this could have been avoided if your employee, Mr. Huang Ling Ji, did what Ms. Ying Hu did when we first arrived at the airport at 9:10am. It was possible for us to go on the 10:10am flight but he refused us entry, never ratified the situation and then committed unfair treatment.
All five of us will make sure that the heads of our Hospitality and Tourism Management program at Purdue University, the Dean of our school and the President of our university receives a full report of your company’s treatment of its customers and we will make sure that no study abroad program through Purdue University flies Delta Airlines again.

Thank you for this experience because as Hospitality majors we learned firsthand exactly how to not treat a customer. Your company’s actions will be used as real life case studies in our curriculum for now on.
Sydney Russell

Posted by eyeprtty2 00:24 Comments (0)

Farewell Nanjing and Jinling Hotel

A chance of a lifetime became an experience of a lifetime

sunny 16 °F
View Nanjing, China on eyeprtty2's travel map.

For the past week the other interns and I have finished work, taken our two final exams and been saying goodbye to the good life in Nanjing. The hotel had numerous farewell events planned for us but the main event was Friday night at a sister hotel about 45 minutes away from the Nanjing Jinling hotel. It was an emotional evening.

We first went to the Nanjing Institute of Tourism and Hospitality to have our graduation ceremony and receive our awards.

Then we went to the other Jinling Hotel in a neighboring city for our farewell party. Every trainer and department leader was in attendance and the party was in the hotels nicest ballroom. The night had an itinerary of speeches, dinner, KTV (karaoke) and presents. It was so moving. I got so choked up during my 1 min speech that I couldn't speak for a moment. The dinner menu is pictured below and every dish was... interesting. Luckily I was not too hungry because I piged out in the beginning on the h'orderves.

I handed out the pictures that I had framed of me with each one of my trainers and my State of Ohio pins. It was very surprising how much everyone bought us. Luckily I sent home half of my stuff two months ago or else I would have needed a new suitcase just for the presents from that night. Everyone was so thoughtful and really put so much effort in to that event. Sometimes I worry that I'll never like any other internship because they won't treat us like the Jinling did. That was truly a night to remember.

Posted by eyeprtty2 23:54 Archived in China Comments (0)

Today I learned...

Interesting tips picked up while working as a hostess at Jins Cafe

View Nanjing, China on eyeprtty2's travel map.

When the restaurant is not busy I have plenty of time to stand at the hostess booth and talk to my trainer. Her name is Michelle and she is the most innocent little Asian woman ever. At 27 years old she has had 2 boyfriends (one couldn't afford a house so he could not marry her and the other lived in a neighboring city which was viewed as too far away so her parents did not approve), never tasted alcohol and never been in a bar. I know, utter craziness but I am surprised at how naive and pure most of the people in China are. Maybe it has something to do with their over protective government. The average 10 year old in America is more jaded than these people.

Any who today was one of those not too busy days so Michelle, another hostess and I chatted it up Nanjing style. I learned that Chinese never write in red, especially names because it is deamed as an offensive gesture. Michelle told me about a time that she wrote her teachers name on an assignment and her teacher called her in to his office asking why she felt the need to disrespect him.

Also they never draw a box around someone's name because that is also considered offensive. Something about isolating the person and their family name. Idk. So complicated.

K that is it for today.

Zai jian!

Posted by eyeprtty2 22:02 Comments (0)

More More Girls Trip to Shanghai

Day 3 (Last day)

50 °F

We quickly woke up and checked out of the hostel (after noon) but luckily they did not charge us an extra day. I left the hostel disappointed because I wanted my usual (Curry Chicken with Ginger Tea) and they gave me some excuse about their not being any hot water so I could not have my tea. Even trying to bribe the waiter didn’t help so my last words to the server were, “I know you all aren’t going all 8 hours without your Green tea but whatever I’ll just have Curry”.

Our first stop for the day was Madam Tuesands Wax Museum. It was mostly Chinese celebrities but there were quite a few westerners. I am sure the one in New York or France is better but this was a fun little activity for the day. However whoever made these models messed over my men! The black people were never the right color. They made Obama too skinny and dark and Kobe was too short and light. Ah… any who we took some pretty funny pics and thoroughly entertained all of the Chinese that were in our company.
After the museum we went to Qipu Rd. that is the famous shopping area in Shanghai. I was the only one that really wanted to go but it was very disappointing. Beijing’s bargaining area is much larger, cleaner and has better quality inventory. Qipu barely bargained and they didn’t even sell electronics. It was just clothes and shoes.
We decided that we should go back to Dragonfly and get another massage after the disappointing shopping experience. This time I chose the one hour Aroma Oil massage and was once again very pleased with my option. This one was performed naked unlike the last massage and I definitely went to sleep.

When I woke up it was time to eat and Blair, Melissa and I decided to go to the New Zealand restaurant down the street from the massage place. It was sooooooooooo good! There was this really cute Chinese waiter that served us and he and I totally flirted when it was time to pay the bill. He asked if we wanted dessert and I said, “What’s your name? You’re not on the menu”. Then we started talking about how the three of us ended up in Shanghai and we told him that we were leaving at 9:00pm for Nanjing. He said, “Oh I don’t get off until 10:00” and I said, “Oh just take a break. 15 mins will do.” And he replied back with a wink “No, I need 45”! It was HILARIOUS :^)

We left the restaurant and ran back to the hostel just in time to pick up our luggage and drink a glass of wine with our Spanish Boys before we had to catch a cab to the train station.
Overall I loved Shanghai and would totally move there if I ever had to live in China. It was very similar to NY but prettier and less congested however there was way too much shopping and over all consumerism/materialism in the air.

Posted by eyeprtty2 09:28 Comments (0)

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