NOV 21 fifteen hours ahead of Texas time
Today I flew to Tokyo. Yes, I know this is not the date you are reading this. I blogged ahead because I didn’t know if I would be able to have time or computer to keep caught up. I know for sure I won’t have access every day because we are staying in hotels at least three nights.
I am now at my son’s house and have been awake for an hour. It is now 2:30 AM Japan time. Seems insomnia doesn’t care where in the world I am.
The plane took off from Dallas almost on time on November 20. The pilot announced that because of the weather we would fly over Abilene, circle around towards San Antonio and then into Houston. For those of you who do not care to fly, this was the announcement the pilot gave on our approach to Houston. “We are in the process of circling the field. Seems that the air controler told the plane in front of us to slow down. It slowed down too much causing us to slow as much as we could. We got too close to the backend of the other plane so we are trying again” Now wouldn’t that make your heart go pit a pat?
When we arrived at Bush International, I was expecting to board my jet to Japan in less than two hours. It was scheduled to leave at 10:45. I was told it was leaving at 3 pm…four hours later than scheduled. I was not too happy a camper but, like always, I made do.
They gave us an $8 certificate for lunch. I forgot that I had passed a Food Court on my walk from terminal C to gate E 7. It was about a mile back down the road, it seemed. I settled for Ruby’s Diner, a theme straight out of the 40s or 50s. I got by with the certificate and $3 for a hamburger,French fries and a $2.00 tip.
I wasn’t really hungry, but I passed the Blue Bonnet ice cream francise and thought a dip of Mocha Chocolate Fudge sounded great. I didn’t look at the prices. There I was with a $4.05 single dip waffle cone!
We took off shortly after 3. It seems that the plane we were supposed to take was grounded for mechanical repairs. I am glad they discovered the problem before we took off. They had to wait for a plane to arrive from Europe. I thought because it was predicted for Houston to flood that the delay was weather related.
With all the cutbacks on schedules, the plane had few empty seats. Thank goodness I got an aisle seat. I need to stretch my legs frequently. I managed to nap off and on. I watched three episodes of Bones and one NCIS, two of my favorite shows.I watched about 1/3 of Madagascar. I faded in the middle of the movie. I tried to watch a movie about a Puerto Rican family in Chicago at Christmas but I fell asleep, awoke, slept again, etc. The first pair of earphones I got didn’t work in one ear. The second pair got caught in the tray and one side ripped off. Finally, I got a third set.
Thankfully my son was there to meet me although he’s thinking seriously of sending me back alone when I leave. It’s a four hour round trip for him.I hope I have the guts to be an adventurer when Sunday comes.
The flight was mainly uneventful, except for knocking my iced soda onto my lap and having to sit there with wet pants until they finally dried. The flight was dark much of the time to help passengers adjust their biological clocks. I slept completely through the time while they were passing out customs declarations. No one woke me. I was a little concerned but I finally found the right form in the terminal so I could proceed. The guy had to take my picture three times before he told me to take off my red beret and bend a little to look into the camera, I was too tall.
As soon as my son took my arrival picture, I told him I HAD to find a bathroom. There I was greeted with a bidet…something I’d never used before. I did what I came in there to do then I pushed the spray button. When it stopped I pushed another button. Ahhhh. It had a button that said “flush sounds” with music notes printed on it. I pushed it and there was a recorded sound but when I looked the paper hadn’t gone down. I rose part way and pushed again, missing that button and hitting the spray. It got my lowered jeans and panties full force. Now I was walking around again with wet pants. At least I have a sense of humor. I was giggling about it when I left the bathroom and told my son. I certainly didn’t know anyone in Japan and would never see them again so I didn’t care what anyone thought.
Nathan had bought a ticket for me to ride the train. Unfortunately it was not useable on the line we needed. It seems Tokyo has a large number of independently owned railroad lines. I tried to put the ticket into the slot and alert noises sounded. The attendant explained as best she could about having to buy another ticket for the correct line. My son easily becomes frustrated and displeased. He was afraid he was not going to get his approx. $17.00 back (1450 yen.) He discovered where to find the train and we were off for a two hour train ride.
Just like in America, there were phones, Iphones, and games in what appeared to be 2/3 of the riding public. It was 11 at night and the trains were still rush hour traffic filled. Actually, that’s American rush hour traffic, not Japanese. There was no need for people pushers. I was going to take a picture but my son asked that I not do it. Two young boys (maybe middle school but possibly younger) got on with tennis rackets hung on their backs. They were alone and it was almost 11:20 by that time.
We were changing lines and as I passed this billboard I glanced briefly. (My son walks fast.) There were two guys with spiked hair. One had a thumbs up. Both were grinning widely. I didn’t see the third tag but under the first two jars it said Hard and Super Hard. The product was DHT. That’s all I saw, I asked my son and he didn’t reply immediately. Nor had he seen the ad. A few stops later he said “The Japanese aren’t really like that (I hadn’t told him what I was thinking.) It was probably for a hair care product. That had been my first guess. My second one……
Yoko had to meet us at the train station to see about getting a refund for the mis-bought ticket. It took awhile, but she’s so sweet that the man in the booth finally understood and refunded her ticket.
Now here I am at the table sitting in the light of their four foot Christmas tree. The two foot tree I sent them last Chrismas sits in the window. Even though the rooms are small, there really is more room in this apartment than I originally thought. I could live here comfortably.
I think I’m going to like it here. I finally was able to figure out how to bring up my website and access my email after giving up about three hours ago. I’m using Yoko’s computer and I can’ t read or write Japanese so it was a challenge finding msn. In three more hours it’s Mt. Fugi. Oh, I forgot to comment on my son’s heated toilet seat. It’s NICE! Namaste. Sayonara. Attic Annie