What's up people of the Syberworld, it's Actual Acorn comin at ya with a MAJOR blog update. The update is, well, I'm in Japan now. Or I will be by the time you read this. I'm actually writing this en route to Japan. To say "I've always wanted to go to Japan" is an understatement. I've always dreamed of going to Japan. When I was a child, I always begged my parents to take us to Japan for spring break, but we only ever went to my grandparent's house instead.
When I was 15, I was completely dead-set on running away from home to move to Japan. I had every minute detail plotted out. The only reason I didn't follow through with it was because I realized I didn't have a passport.
In retrospect, I definitely didn't have every minute detail plotted out, and the lack of passport was not the biggest issue with that plan.
When I was 19, I was an adult with my own money. I could finally go to Japan, for real this time! Then COVID hit. That was two years ago. I'm still 19 (plus two COVID years), my birthday was a few days ago so, what the heck? Let's go to Japan!
That brings us to now. Since I'm going alone, I thought it would be fun to blog the whole trip, so that way it's like I'm traveling with all of you guys! I like to pretend people read my blogs.
Travelling is exhausting. After that awful overnight escapade in Chicago I started to have second thoughts about spending three whole weeks alone in Japan. So far, everything has gone smoothly, but it's still stressfull as heck.
I took the Blue Line to the O'Hare airport again. Having done it before probably saved me a lot of stress yesterday. Plus I'm 21 now, and had my passport, so I was able to sleep in the hotel I actually booked. I only slept a few hours though, because I've been adjusting my sleep schedule to Japan time for the past month or so.
I'm not losing all control. I've been staying up until 5 A.M. because I'm adjusting to Japan time. Honestly!
6 A.M, shuttle to O'Hare. Layover in Vancouver, Canada. For some reason the flight attendants were really insistent that everyone on the 4-hour flight drink plenty of water. The line to the bathroom stretched the entire length of the plane.
There was a spectacular view of the mountains from the airport in Vancouver. They don't come out well in photos. Apparently there was a wildfire raging in the foothills, which led to the smokiness in the image.
They don't come out well in photos.
The layover was 6 hours. Apparently A&W in Canada serves vegan burgers. They tasted great, and gave me amazing stomach cramps.
Then I transferred to All Nippon Airways. That flight was 10 hours long. Luckily there was plently of leg room, and those screens on the back of the chairs, with free movies and stuff. Too bad I couldn't figure out how to change the system language to English!
I actually torrented the entirety of Nichijou to binge on my laptop for such an emergency. Too bad I accidentally downloaded the 12 EPISODE DIRECTOR'S CUT VERSION! So I only had 4 hours of in-flight entertainment. What's more? I accidentally downloaded the RAW version. Certified Yuuko moment.
For some reason, the airline turned off the lights and dimmed the
windows an hour into the flight, then undimmed them a few hours later.
Now, the plane left at 4 PM Vancouver time, then flew directly west for
10 hours. I did the math and according to my calculations, it should
have been daylight the whole time. So why dim the lights for no reason?
As we approached Japan it got dark out for real. It gave the illusion of
being awake all night.
The flight attendants even changed into a grey "night uniform" from their usual flowery uniforms, then changed back into their flowery ones when the lights came back one.
In addition to toilet paper, the airplane toilet had one of those legendary Japanese bidets. Now, as a lifelong American and proud Belizean, I've never used anything but toilet paper, but I will admit I'm eager to try a Japanese toilet to see what everyone's raving about. But I didn't try it. I didn't want to screw up somehow and have to spend the rest of the flight with wet pants or something. Besides that, I really didn't want my first time to be in an airplane bathroom.
I ate lunch, slept, woke up, ate dinner, slept again, met my true love, got married, had kids, died from heart disease, woke up, and STILL had 6 hours left on the flight.
I have no real plan once I get to Japan. I have hotels booked, and kind of a wishlist but that's it.
- Go to the National Diet Library
- Follow the serpent's trail in Jinbocho
- Climb Mt. Aka
- Sleepover with Yuuko
- Hike in the Aokigahara Forest
- Use an umbrella
- Eat a takoyaki
- see something paranormal
- visit a conbini