Wednesday, July 4, 2007

Things I learned today…er…yesterday…tomorrow?

July 4, 2007 3:41 p.m. (to 6:05 p.m.)
Tokyo, Japan

Business Class
Business class is better than coach. Not just a little bit. I’m talking a LOT better than coach. That must be why it costs so gosh darn much money. Along with the crazy amount of space, you also get free stuff (the picture is of me trying to touch the seat in front of me with my free-sock clad feet and failing). There’s the standard fancy meal/free alcohol, but you also get a nice little toiletry kit with toothpaste, a toothbrush, lotion, lip balm, socks, earplugs, a sleep mask, a pen, and other nice little goodies. Also, while they give you a free pair of earbud headphones, you get to borrow super-dee-duper nice noise canceling headphones too. While watching the same 2 episodes of the office 8 times in a row is a little irritating, watching those episodes on your fancy little personal TV without any airplane noise getting through your headphones makes it worth it. I’m a fan.

The service by itself is something I could write an entire blog about. I don’t know if this is normal of business class flight attendants or if this woman was just an exceptionally nice person, but she talked with us for a long time, and brought me extra brownies every so often when it looked like I hadn’t eaten in more than 10 minutes (poor Mandy). Nice job on the flight attendants, American Airlines. Maybe it’s just the $6,000 plane ticket, but I think you did better this time.

The International Date Line

The International Date Line is a fancy little imaginary line that separates one side of the world from the other and serves to confuse the heck out of your system when you travel across the world. I, for example, have been up since Tuesday, July 3 at 5:30 a.m. and it is now Wednesday, July 4 at 3:51 p.m. here. My body doesn’t realize this and definitely thinks it’s 1:51 a.m., but is equally confused by the fact that its eyes are looking out upon a bright, albeit overcast afternoon in Tokyo. Today Dad and I flew across the world and it was about noon the entire trip. Interesting phenomenon. Because we can use our fancy little personal TV screens in business class to watch the plane en route to our destination, I watched as the airplane wing I was looking at crossed the International Date Line, and so I took a picture of it in case you were wondering what the International Date Line looks like. This is also my picture of the day.

The International Date Line


It feels like I should be able to call Jack, but I can’t because that would be expensive. Plus it’s 3:12 a.m. in Dallas, and he would be mad at me if I woke him up.

Happy 4th, Japan!

It’s Independence Day and nobody’s off work or celebrating, and I don’t think there will be any fireworks tonight.

The Admirals Club is nicer than the airport

Mandy enjoys a ham and cheese or egg salad finger sandwich in the Tokyo Admirals Club. Mmm mmm free food.

So at one point after my dad told the friendly flight attendant about the trip he's taking me on this month, she said "in my next life, I want to come back as your daughter." Good call, nice lady. Because being his daughter also comes with companion status in the Admirals Club, which means fancy chairs, free food and drinks, free internet, and abundant power outlets (which, as we all know, are not easy to come by in an airport, and if you can find them, you run the risk of crazy lady unplugging your laptop cord because her battery has died). If you've never had the privilage of hanging out in the Admirals Club, I'm torn between doing an "in your face, I got to go" dance and pretending it's not any better so you'll feel better about your uncomfortable, loud airport waiting time. But I can't lie; it is better. Oh, so much better. But look on the bright side: I'm writing this blog from the comfort of the Tokyo Admirals Club, and therefore you are all benefitting.

Airplane Magic Act

I mentioned it was overcast in Tokyo. We watched a lot of planes take off and disappear about 1,000 feet off the ground. It was pretty cool. After waiting around about an hour and a half with my video-enabled digital camera and missing 3 departing planes, I finally got this video for you to watch. Hey, I had a 7 hour layover. What else is there to do?

Here are some other pictures that we took that are worth seeing today:

Our route from DFW to Tokyo was slightly north. Read about that in Dad's blog entry.

Dad sets his watch to go off in an hour so he can get up and move around to prevent blood clots and another pulmonary embolism. Move around while you're traveling, folks. It could save your life.

These are pictures of Montana from the air. Not too bad if I do say so myself.

Tokyo - That's really all I could snap after we went under the clouds (see "Airplane Magic Act") and before we landed.