Sunday, July 29, 2007

Tokyo, Chicago, Madison, Appleton

What follows probably isn't interesting. Actually, the past four weeks' worth of entries probably weren't that interesting. Too bad I put a disclaimer at the end and not the beginning, huh?

6:03 AM: I woke up to the air conditioner starting up, which was absolutely freezing, and all the lights being suddenly turned on. Finally, we were freed from our prison, and now I'm back on the fourth floor lounge, waiting to be able to check in.

10:13 AM: That was strange. The oldest man in the world approached me (right as Harry and Voldemort were facing off, of course). I could see the entire shape of his skull through his skin. He explained that he had his middle school students with him, and he wanted to let them practice English on me.
Suddenly I'm surrounded by six nervous students reading questions from sheets of paper. They asked easy questions like, "What is your name?" and "Where are you from?" but then moved onto much more difficult questions like, "What is famous in your country?" (I was a bit of a jerk here - I said, "The Statue of Liberty, hot dogs, and the Atlanta Braves") and, "What is most important thing in life?" which just left me baffled (I considered giving them the same three answers as the previous question). Never a dull moment, not even in an airport.

11:47 AM: Nearly 24 hours after I arrived, I finally got through security. Since I'm flying Business Class, I got into the Red Carpet Club, which is totally awesome. Now I can enjoy all the free drinks and food I want, and nap in relative luxury. Also, they gave me a ticket for a mini suite during my layover in O'Hare, where apparently I'll be able to shower and eat breakfast. I'll have to see what that is all about, but right now I'm in heaven.

11:50 AM: I finally discovered where the smell of vomit has been coming from - my track jacket. I foolishly shoved it into my backpack while it was still damp after the typhoon in Kyoto, and it must have gotten mildewy or something, because the worst smell of all time is coming from it. I have to remember to keep that pocket closed on the flight to avoid embarrassing myself my first time in Business Class.

11:54 AM: I tried to get a Time or a Newsweek, but all they had was hardcore pornography. Way to stay classy, Japan.

4:34 PM: Well, we're up in the air now, and it's totally awesome. Not only am I in Business Class, but I have the front seat, so I've got a crapload of leg room. The seats recline, with leg and footrests, and I'm constantly being waited on. The second I sat down, I was given orange juice by one of the flight attendants, who saw my book and was impressed that I had gotten Harry Potter in Japan. Then I was given a menu, showing all the elaborate courses in the meal service. Soon after, I was given course after course of the best-tasting airplane food I've ever had, while I watched The Last Mimzy.
The one downside is that while the food tasted good, it is airplane food. Let's just say it's a good thing I'm within ten feet of the bathrooms.

10:23 AM: I finally finished Harry Potter. Little did I know that all the flight attendants were waiting the 10-hour flight so I could tell them what happened. The second I closed the book, I was called up front, where I proceeded to ruin the entire book for five eager flight attendants.

Even though it's been over a week since I got back, I figure I should finish this. Long story short, I got stuck in Chicago, but luckily my sister was in Chicago at that time, about to head back to Madison, so she picked me up and brought me to her apartment, where my mom met us and drove me home. One week later and my body is just beginning to readjust to the time difference. The jet lag is killer.

Looking back, I can't believe what an incredible trip I had. I'm not even 21 years old, and I've been able to see and do some amazing things that some people much, much older than me haven't even been able to do. The main purpose (besides fun and seeing some really crazy things) of my trip was a success - I am so confident in my ability to survive on my own in a completely foreign world, and I am no longer nervous about getting by in Egypt. In fact, Egypt should be a breeze compared to this - I certainly won't be hopping from train to train every day! I look forward to stepping off my plane and onto African soil, but until then, I'm happy to have these two extra weeks to spend with my friends and family at home. Check back here on August 22nd for my first Egyptian update.


honeybunny said...

Hey t-boy

thanks for the link.


zoobabe said...

It sounds like you had an amzing time! You are lucky to have had the opportunity.

Thanks for sharing!