Lost passport; Found passport; Headed home.

Short version: Lost my passport; Found it again; Heading home.

This morning I checked out of my hotel in Paya Lebar (Singapore) and went to the airport. I went around 10am, not because my flight was imminent, but because Changi airport is the world’s best airport and I wanted to see more of it.

When I got to the airport, the checkin desks weren’t open yet, so I sat by an outlet and started some writing that I have been putting off. About an hour later, my manager says, on our team chat, that he lost his passport at TSA on the way to Amsterdam, and had to go back and get it.

So … I check my pocket for my passport … and it’s not there.

I went to the info desk to ask about lost and found, and it’s unstaffed. The security guy, who doesn’t understand a lot of English, says, yeah, someone will be there soon.

I went through all of my bags three times, emptying them on the floor, and started to panic. Thinking back, I KNOW that I had it when I left the hotel, and that I put it in my back pocket, rather than in the pocket of my bag where it goes. Ergo, I must have left it in the taxi.

After waiting on hold for more than an hour with the taxi company and opening a lost item report on their website, I start trying to figure out what happens if I don’t find it. That leads to an hour on hold, and then being passed around to various people at the US Embassy. And of course it’s Sunday, so nobody has any actual answers.

And then several hours talking with my company travel folks, and getting passed around to one person after another after another and back to the beginning and FINALLY getting a straight answer that I can get my flight moved to tomorrow, so that I can go to the embassy.

More time talking to the embassy tells me that an emergency passport takes 1-2 days, best case. So back with the travel agency to find a hotel. And back with the taxi company checking on the lost item report.

Anyways, after about 6 hours, I went downstairs looking for some food, and … there’s another info desk, and they have my passport. Apparently I dropped it as I came in the door when I arrived, and it’s been there all day.

So rather than seeing Changi Airport, I spent 6 or 7 hours on the phone, being as stressed almost to the point of tears.

So I’m in the Blossom Lounge now, and heading home soon.