Joshua Law Kok Hwa, regional senior vice-president of the Malaysia Airlines in China, speaking at the press conference at the Metro Park Lido Hotel in Beijing, March 8, 2014.
A Chinese journalist working for Yangtze Evening News is thanking the newspaper for a schedule change a week before that meant he didn’t board the Malaysia Airlines flight that’s gone missing.
Xu Jin had been on a business trip in Malaysia and was meant to fly to Beijing for an interview on the MH370 flight, according to Shanghai Daily. A week prior to the trip, however, the visit was canceled, and Xu ended up taking a China Southern Airlines flight on Saturday afternoon to Guangzhou, where he transferred to Nanjing.
“It was just the newspaper’s arrangements that saved me,” he posted to his Weibo account.
“I have arrived at home safely. My pregnant wife was waiting for me at Nanjing airport, where the temperature was just 4 degrees Celsius. I don’t know how long she had been waiting. […] At home, the parents of two families and two pet dogs were anxiously awaiting my return,” he wrote.
Xu added that when he arrived at the Kuala Lumpur International Airport around 10 a.m., the news of the plane’ s disappearance had not yet spread.
“When I was interviewing people at the airport, my English ability seemed to regress to primary school level. I couldn’t remember even simple words,” he wrote.
“My hands wouldn’t stop shaking. Even though I was wearing a padded jacket and it was 30 degrees, I felt really cold.”
A traveler from the US also took to social media expressing gratitude after he had apparently missed the same flight after being delayed by a personal matter.
“By the Grace of God we missed our flight to China. I am okay, as is Rory, my companion. I’m sorry to worry people,” the man under the name @Kaiden IV wrote on Twitter.
“I was very angry at Ria, because she’d gotten sick and I had to cover her. I was working on that, missed my flight to China. Grew angrier”.
“I’m deeply humbled by those who’ve reached out to myself or @Cylithria Forgive my lack of knowing what to say. I’ve no answers, only prayers,” he later tweeted.
An international search operation involving 34 aircraft and 40 ships is still underway for the missing Malaysia Airlines plane that lost contact on Saturday morning about hour into its flight from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing.
The plane was carrying 239 people, families of whom are being flown out to Kuala Lumpur with Malaysia Airlines and and are “preparing themselves for the worst” after over 24 hours of no news.
“I don’t understand,” Zhang Zhiliang, a family member of one of the passengers on MH370, told the Wall Street Journal. “We have all the technology in the world these days, and how is it that we can’t locate them? GPS, phones, everything is so developed, and yet we can’t find our families.”
Previously on Shanghaiist:
29 Chinese artists onboard missing Malaysia Airlines flight
Authorities investigate 4 passengers using stolen passports