Tuesday, 26 February 2013

The Arrogance of Entitlement

A passenger who stole wine on an Air France flight to Wuhan
One of my friends is a flight attendant and tells me lots of stories about dealing with mainland Chinese passengers.

Some of them order two drinks at once during meal times, while others demand more food after they have finished eating because they claim they are still hungry. But she believes they do this to get their money's worth.

Don't even get her started on the state of the washrooms.

Sometimes when a child pees into a plastic cup, she's asked to take it away and she has to explain to them this is unhygienic and they must dispose of it in the toilet themselves.

And so I'm not surprised hearing about the latest tale in the news.

Apparently two men on an Air France flight from Paris to Wuhan snatched around eight bottles of wine from the airline service cart and stuffed them in their bags.

Fellow passengers were so shocked and objected to their pilfering, but the men allegedly ignored them.

A Chinese woman called Wen Fei who works in Paris, sat near the two men on the flight and wrote about the incident on Weibo. She said she tried to stop them after they took at least eight bottles and stowed them in their bags -- without asking flight crew.

"I explained to them it was not OK and interpreted the flight attendants' explanation in French, but they said it was none of my business," she told a Hong Kong newspaper on Tuesday.

She said the two men shouted at her in a Wuhan accent.

"They asked me to back off if I ever wanted to leave Wuhan in one piece," Wen said. She added the pilot later interfered and asked the men to stop fighting with her.

"This kind of behaviour is demeaning for the Chinese travelling abroad," she said.

Wen managed to take a photo of one of the men that she posted on Weibo.

Her post got many comments online.

"The Chinese are always loud and jump queues to get on a flight -- even when everyone has a seat," said one.

"They are used to 'stealing' from people in China and now they start applying that habit elsewhere," said another, implying the two men may be Wuhan officials.

The outrage over this incident is far from over -- with the picture of the man, and other witnesses we shall soon find out the identities of the two men.

And mainlanders wonder why Hong Kong people don't welcome them with open arms...

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