The day had finally come when I would be flying to Karachi from Lahore with seven of my friends. With much difficulty, our parents had relented to let us fly alone. They were reassured by the fact that once in Karachi we would be staying with my Aunt Sara who had promised to take good care of us. The prospect of spending three long weeks in Karachi in the company of friends and my favourite aunt was enough to make me ecstatic.
After checking in our luggage, all of us headed to the departure terminal where we were going to wait another half an hour before boarding the plane. While the rest of my friends were taking pictures, Tanya and I decided to go buy a snack. Both of us had skipped breakfast that morning in our excitement but now hunger was setting in. From a nearby shop we bought two bars of chocolate and a magazine to read during the flight. It was a nice feeling to know that we were taking care of ourselves without adult supervision.
When we were heading back to our friends, I suddenly noticed that the boarding pass that I’d been holding in my hand was missing. Trying not to panic, I emptied my pockets and went through my wallet and my backpack. The boarding pass was still nowhere to be seen. We hadn’t even taken off yet and my first mishap had already happened. Tentatively Tanya suggested that we retrace our steps. I brushed away the hint of tears that had begun to form in my eyes and nodded to Tanya.
We scoured the floor for any sign of my boarding ticket but came up empty handed. All we found was a receipt for a magazine that somebody had accidentally dropped. We even asked the shopkeeper from whom we’d bought chocolate if he’d seen my boarding ticket. Unfortunately, he hadn’t. I looked at my watch and realized there were only ten minutes before boarding would begin. I had to solve this dilemma soon otherwise my friend would have to board without me.
During that moment of desperation I decided to go to the information desk to see if they could help me in any way. Before I headed in that direction there was an announcement heard over the din:
“Miss Manal Chaudhry please collect your boarding pass from information desk 7??”
At that moment I could’ve wept with relief. It turned out that another passenger had spotted my boarding pass on the floor and had handed it over to the information desk. I thanked God for saving me from spoiling my trip and happily boarded the plane on time with the rest of my friends.