Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Made it to Tokyo

We've been up for almost 24 hours straight, but we're in our hotel room in downtown Tokyo (Shinjuku).

Our flight was delayed 2 hours leaving Seattle, so that kind of sucked. Then, we shared the plane with a large group of Japanese school girls complete with uniforms, Hello Kitty and Hannah Montana stuff. We were pretty happy to have our seats on the side of the plane in a row of 2 all our own. We didn't want to think what it would have been like to be in the middle of one of the 5 seat rows, surrounded by Japanese school girls.

We got up Monday morning at 4:45 am to hit the gym. It's now 8:57 Tuesday evening in Tokyo which translates into 4:59 am Tuesday morning Seattle time. Angie slept on the plane a bit. I dozed for about an hour unsuccessfully. We're tired and hungry and as soon as room service gets here, we're going to bed.

It was already dark by the time we got into the city from the airport, most of the freeways have high noise abatement walls, and we were sitting in the ass of the airport bus so we didn't see a whole lot. I can say that the freeway system through this city feels like it was built well after all the buildings were. It feels like it is forced to curve around, go up, go down and generally wind in and out without displacing any preexisting buildings. The thought of trying to navigate all of that in a rental car almost seems like an impossible task and one I'm glad we're not trying.

A couple of other first impressions:

It's hot and humid, but not oppressively so. It's not Austin hot. More like Ohio hot.

There is more English on signs and such than I expected.

Everyone has been very polite and helpful so far — cliché perhaps, but true. I was most nervous about getting from the airport to our hotel because our flight was delayed and put under a different flight number than what we told our tour company. They were supposed to have someone meet us at the airport and help get us set up for transportation, but we were pretty sure they wouldn't find us. They did and the woman who helped us was so quick that we didn't really get a chance to tell her how much she eased our anxiety.

Well, room service is here. I'm out.

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