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  • Peter Kam Fai Cheung SBS

The Paradox

"You're on holiday, why do you have to worry about so many things?" My carefree younger daughter remarked on me during our July 2018 trip to Taiwan, and my serious younger son's expression showed the same. "They're right," I thought. "my habit to think and plan three steps ahead has no place during a family holiday."

Having learned from the young, I tried not to think about logistical matters like how to return to the Airport or when was the flight departure time. I just followed them to enjoy the trip, thinking and doing nothing some of the time. We returned to the Airport smoothly and had a relaxing meal before proceeding to the immigration.

What we saw in the restricted area was a sea of unhappy visitors, queuing up to get to the e-immigration gates and we heard immigration officials shouting. It took more than half an hour for us to reach the e-gates. For unknown reasons my son and my daughter could not pass through and had to queue up again at the only human-manned counter.

My acute mission was to rush to the flight gate, alerting the ground crew to wait for my daughter and my son despite final calls. Just 120 seconds before time, my daughter hastily appeared and 60 seconds later, my running son. As we all boarded the flight in the end - the paradox in my mind was: have I been right or wrong to worry about things?

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