Airport ~ 机场

I am at the airport now. No, I am not going overseas. I went to the airport to enjoy a cup of coffee. I have always enjoyed the atmosphere at the airport. Perhaps it is because I do not have much chances of going to the airport when I was young. Which perhaps explains why I would go to the airport whenever I have the time now. This is especially so when I am feeling troubled, watching the planes take off, taking my troubles away with it. Many people would think that I am seriously too free to be taking a bus to the airport in the east of the island for coffee. Yes, I took the public bus. And I live on the west of the island. Only me would do something as meaningless as that.But I just love the airport. If I say that the atmosphere at the airport has a very unique electrifying feel about it, many people would laugh. “what’s so special about it? Except for the fact that there are more pretty stewardesses, more luggages etc! Now, those special stores that used to be available only at the airport are also available elsewhere! So what’s the point of going to the airport?” But the atmosphere at the airport is really special. And it changes throughout the year.

Once, I had to send someone who is going abroad for studies at the airport. Departure hall. At that time, the atmosphere at the airport had a air of anticipation of the freshmen who are going overseas for the first time for studies. For those who came back for school vacation and is going back to school, some had the excited feeling of getting back their freedom they enjoyed overseas, where they do not have the family nagging them. Others might have the sadness of having to leave their families behind again. Hugs. The society back then wasn’t that open, therefore one scene one could see in airport is hugging. Asean parents are more subtle, therefore it is only in the airport that one could see an Asean parent hugging their departing children. Of course, it is not just the students in the departure hall. There are also those workers whose contracts have ended and they are going back to their hometown. Their luggage would have not just the usual luggage bags but also big boxes of electric goods and television sets seems to be their topmost priority. However, they would not have the latest models boasting of the largest screens. They prefer the smaller sets. Other than for the ease of transportation, it is said that such sets are not that big of a power guzzlers and therefore are more popular. They would have the anticipation of leaving and finally being able to meet up with their families again. One would observe that the workers had specially prepared themselves for the occasion, clean shaved, new clothes and some even sport blazers that they were so uncomfortable with.

Departure hall would of course have the usual travellers, outstationed business travellers or returning tourists. With so many different types of people and feelings, how can the airport be not interesting? And on the viewing gallery, there are those handsigns that the ground crew to signal to the pilots after they have loaded and prepared the aircraft for flights… etc

Do go to the airport for a cuppa whenever you are free!

2008-May04
Handwritten in Changi Airport Terminal 2, Coffee Bean & Tea Leaves trayliner.

我现在在机场。不是因为要出国了。我是特地到机场喝咖啡的。我一直都非常享受机场独有的那种气氛。可能是小的时候没有什么机会接触,所以我现在喜欢去机场。开心的时候就兴致勃勃地去机场玩。心情不好的时候就去机场看看飞机起飞,让它们把我的烦恼带走。有很多人会为此说我无聊,吃饱了没事干,才会特地乘车跑到机场去喝咖啡。听清楚了,我是乘搭公共车到位于本岛东部的机场的。而本人,住在小岛上的西部。真的是只有我那么无聊的人才会作出那么无聊的事情。但是,我就是喜欢机场。说机场有一中独特的气氛,或许很多人会觉得好笑。“有什么特别的?!不就是美女比较多,拿行李的人比较多嘛!现在在机场能找到的独有商店,在其他地方也能找到啊!为什么特地要到机场去呢?无聊!”但是,机场真的有它特别的气氛。而这气氛会在一年不同的时间而改变。

我曾为了要送一位出国留学的朋友而去机场。离境处。那时候的机场气氛飘逸着新留学生对即将开始的新独立生活所抱有的一份浓浓的紧张与期待。之前回国度假的留学生呢,有些就有一种迫不及待想逃回那没有父母在身边唠叨的国外自由生活。有些就会对家人有那种依依不舍的心情。拥抱。社会本来没有那么开放。以前,在机场的一个景观就是拥抱。亚洲父母较为保守,因此多半只能在机场看到父母给即将离巢的孩子们一个拥抱。

离境处当然不只是有留学生,还有约满了,要回国的外国劳工。他们的行李堆里除了有一般的行李箱以外,很多时候还会附加了好几箱的电器,而电视机似乎是他们的最爱。但是通常,那电视机不会是最大、最新推出的电视机。通常,他们偏爱小的电视机。除了为了容易运输以外,据说这类电视机的耗电量比较少,所以受欢迎。他们就会散发出那种快要爆炸开了的兴奋。旁观者都看得出劳工们都有细心地修饰自己的门面。胡子刮得干干净净的,衣服是新的,甚至还是特地穿上了西装。

准备离境的,当然还有准备外出旅行的国人、提着公事包要出国工干、度假后收拾心情回家的外国旅客,等等。搀杂着那么多情绪的离境处,还能不精彩吗?还有在观望台上看着飞机在乘客与行李都上机后,关上机门,缓缓离开天桥后,地面人员会打手势与驾驶舱的机师沟通。。。

有空就到机场去喝杯咖啡吧!

2008年5月4 日
手写于樟宜机场第二大厅Coffee Bean & Tea Leaves.

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