Monday, August 23, 2010

Our Japan Trip From the Beginning

Our trip... not sure where to start. Maybe from the beginning, but then it may be interesting to us and very ho hum to you.

To say the least my first trip abroad will not be my last if I have anything to do with it. Not sure I can say the same for Rod. He is trying to find a kinder word than miserable to define his experience.

After a short flight to Toronto via Canada Air we boarded the biggest plan I had ever been inside of in my life. Our girls told us that they were actually on a double decked plan. Incredible. Ours was not. Rod was disappointed that, although I had chosen a window seat at his request, his "window" seat did not actually have a window. Our seat was in the emergency exit isle. This would prove to be a fantastic seat however at first it was a disappointment. No window, computer screen or tray. After take off and the seat belt sign was turned off the gentleman next to us pulled up a computer screen and a tray from inside his seat. Oh! Now he was happy. For the window nearest us we got up occasionally to look out. Not much out there. We were flying high above the clouds. They actually wanted us to keep the window shades closed since it would be "daylight" the entire 12+ hour flight. Just opening one shade brought a lot of light into the cabin. People needed to sleep. At any rate, Rod was now happy.

The pilot's voice broke over the intercom to share a few stats. The usual, how high we were flying the temperature and so forth... the interesting thing to me was that he shared all the times they would be feeding us. Our first meal would be dinner followed by a snack then a sandwich then a breakfast two hours before we landed. The stewards would come by hourly between meals to offer water. Twelve hours is a long time to sit, no matter what you choose to do while sitting. I think the idea was to keep us full and sleepy in hopes that we would do just that, sleep.

They also have a service aboard called "Duty Free Shopping" should you be a shop shopaholic or simply forgot to get that gift your promised, no worries, just shop away... the items are actually stored aboard and are brought to you. There was a variety to choose from including watches, jewelry, chocolates, knickknacks, coffees and so forth. Fascinating.

I am one of those persons that have ear troubles when flying. Research proved to be a sweet reward for me. Taking the advice of other bloggers I was able to have an almost pain free trip. I used a product called ear-planes, these are small earplug looking devices that a person can screw into the ear. It is rubber. This opens up the ear tubes a little. I used a nasal spray beginning about five minutes before the plane took off and until we were up to a fairly high altitude. I prefer eating something gummy such as liquorish rather than chewing gum. I think the swallowing helps. I also took a decongestant about thirty minutes before the plane took off. Some advise taking a sleeping agent. I did not.

We passed the time ... reading, knitting, watching a movie, listening to music and dozing.