Submitted by Jeff Buster on Sun, 08/26/2007 - 19:32.

Asleep on the job....                  photo courtesy Tim Littler                            Xian,  China

Recently I have had three separate  friends traveling through China and Tibet.   Along with the photo of the bike freighters – which  ironically, people with different viewpoints will see either as backward or very forward -  my friends told me this other story – which demonstrates how China is very forward:


Train tourism allows travel without hotels – travelers eat and sleep on the train.   When a recent train tour was visiting the Qin Terra Cotta Warriors near Xian one eighty four year old British tourist on board was deaf.  Walking through the warrior hall the deaf gentleman became separated from the rest of his guided party and eventually decided  to go outside the museum hall and watch for his party members as they exited the museum.  


After waiting and not seeing anyone from his party or the bus that brought them to the museum the gentleman decided it would be best to go back to the train station where he had disembarked.  A employee with the  taxi queue service outside the museum understood English and put the Brit into a cab.  Off he went to the railroad station but the tour train was no where to be seen – with heavy station traffic tour trains must often discharge passengers and pull out of the station to lay over on a siding outside of town and in this case the passengers where scheduled to embark on the train from another station in Xian.


Moments later the rest of the Brits’ party came out of the museum – by this time the deaf gentleman’s absence was of concern and the guide spoke to the police outside the museum.   The police notified their headquarters where the last hours’ videos of the public sidewalk outside the museum were scanned until they saw a tall light skinned foreigner getting into a cab.  The license plate of the cab was visible and an all points went out across Xian.


In minutes the cab was pulled over and the driver asked about the drop-off point of his deaf Brit passenger.   Police were notified back across town and they went into the railway station and found the gentleman patiently sipping his tea – all this took place within a huge metropolis over only five hours. 


And they all lived happily ever after. 


Do you think this level of helpful public organization exists in any city in the USA?





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