My Trip to Japan: Day 1 The Horribly Long Flight

Thursday November 18 (American Time) 5:00 AM:

This is what time I got up (even after going to Atlanta the night before) so that I could roll out of bed, slap some clothes on, and go to the airport.  My flight left at around 7 in the morning to go to New York.  It was my first time flying, as well as my first time out of the country, so I really feel the need to document it.  I was a bit nervous, not so much the going to another country (that didn’t hit me until I got to Narita airport).  I was more nervous about not knowing what to do once I got to JFK and missing my flight to Japan.  The flight was not too bad, I didn’t really sleep, but it didn’t really feel that long either.  I mostly read.  And of course when I did get to JFK, I got lost, mostly because I didn’t realize I had to go out of the secured area to get to the other terminal so I walked around in circles for a little while before asking someone for help.  After much stress and another trip to the ticket counter for my boarding pass and another trip through security, I made it to my gate.

Luckily on this flight I had an American lady, who was very familiar with flying, sitting next to me, so she told me important things like where the toilets were and such.  Here I want to note the difference between American flight attendants and Japanese flight attendants.  In America, their uniforms aren’t exactly uniform, and the flight attendants, for the most part, are a little past their prime.  However, the Japanese flight attendants had the cutest uniforms, and even had cute little aprons to serve us our meals in.  The presentation was just totally different.  There isn’t too much to say about the flight really.  I got some interesting food, I’m not sure what all of it was, but it was good.  My favorite was probably the somewhat doughnut like thing with custard in the middle, only minus the glaze on the outside.  I watched a whole bunch of movies, including Despicable Me in German, and I did like it better the second time around, heh heh.

Around 14 hours later we finally landed at Narita airport at 4:30 PM on Friday in Japan.  We were immediately rushed through to immigration, where I was met with a disgruntled employee not really willing to explain to me what I did wrong on the form… So I guessed and guessed wrong, but the employee at the counter was much more patient and helped me fix it.  Then I got my bag and went through customs and waited for Shun.  I almost fell asleep waiting, but I thought that would not be a good idea in a public place.  Little did I know just how common it is in Japan, and how I would have fit right in, heh.

We rode a train back to Tokyo, which took about 45 minutes I suppose.  I was absolutely amazed at the ticket machine as well as the gate, which means I was in the way of a mess of people behind me.  Haha I was THAT rude American.  I had to learn to stand on the left side of the escalator in a single file, so that people could walk up on the right.  It took several times of Shun pulling me to the left, but I eventually got it.  The train ride was amazing, because it was the first time I had ever ridden a legit train, because trains at the zoo don’t count.  I also liked watching the scenery grow from small buildings and rural houses to vast concrete structures and street lights.  The buildings in Japan are different from the ones here I feel like.  It was interesting, to say the least.  Also, trains in Japan have heated seats.  I’m just saying…

As soon as I got out of the train station in Kameido (the part of Tokyo Shun lives in), I was utterly amazed.  I took a couple of pictures, but the lights were so bright and everything was so different from the small Alabama towns I had grown accustomed to.  Luckily for Shun, he lives close to the train station, so he didn’t have to put up with my gawking for too long.  Then I got a shower, and we ate dinner (which Shun cooked), and watched some Crayon Shin Chan, as well as a bit of Japanese Harry Potter 5 before I fell asleep.  Heh heh that was my first couple of days!  It gets more interesting, I promise.

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