It must have been today, four years ago, that I went to China. I was going to change planes in Amsterdam. At check-in at Dublin Airport, the person behind the desk took some time checking my passport and my ticket, enough time for me to think “there must be something wrong, what is it?” And then he said, “Sir, the names on your passport and the ticket don’t match.”

Not good news when you have less than an hour to departure. I had booked the flights and I was pretty sure that I had booked them in my name. What was the check-in person on about?

He gave the passport and the tickets back to me to check.

I had taken Pádraig’s passport instead of my own. I had grabbed the first German passport from my desk at home without checking that it was actually mine.

The funny thing was that what had called the attention of the check-in person was not that the person on the passport did (1) not look like myself and (2) was more than 30 years younger.

Using some magic, that day Pat managed to get home, find my passport and bring it up to the airport, all in time for me to get on to that plane to Amsterdam and then to Beijing.

I was terribly excited. I was going to get a front row ticket to the Beijing Opera, a great day in a great city, and another flight to Sanya on Hainan Island in the South China Sea where I was going to give a presentation using Skyfall and Adele’s title song the same name of this brilliant James Bond movie as a theme for a keynote on the future of the localisation industry. Let the sky fall. When it crumbles. We will stand tall. Face it all together.