I took Chieko to the airport this morning so she could fly to Tokyo. She’s attending a teaching seminar there, and will be back tomorrow evening. I always jump at the chance to get to any airport and geek out at the airplanes, and this was as good an excuse as any. After bidding her farewell as she went through security, I headed up to the observation deck to check out Komatsu Airport’s minimal action.
Komatsu has a kind of rush out in the morning, when a handful of flights leave for/come from Tokyo, and then it’s dead most of the day until the evening, when another couple of flights come and go. There’s also a wing of the Japanese air force stationed there, which is great for hot F-15 action.
People always talk about how great the service in Japan is, and it’s true. I hate going back to America and dealing with the shit service there (sorry about the language but really, that’s what it is), where I feel put out by people as I try to give them my money. One reflection of this customer-oriented attitude, which if you’ve ever been to a Japanese airport you probably noticed, is that the ground crew always waves goodbye to the departing jet passengers. It’s a little dorky, but I’ll take it over the American system, where airport workers show their appreciation by beating the crap out of your luggage. Sorry the pic is a bit small, but you can blow it up and see the two dudes waving away.
Another difference between airports in America versus Japan is the aircraft they use. When I flew from Boston to Los Angeles, we used a Boeing 757, which is not a huge airplane. When I flew back, it was and Airbus A320, which is a tiny plane for such a long flight. It takes about an hour to fly from Kanazawa to Tokyo, and what do they use a giant Boeing 747. Of course, they are ferrying as many people as possible, so this aircraft makes a lot of sense. But I always find it funny that they use such a huge aircraft for a very short flight, while American airlines only use it for international flights. Over analysis? Airplane geekery?
Here’s Chieko’s big jet about to taxi with a pair of F-15’s taking off behind it. You know it’s awesome.
I have to report back to work for a meeting on Friday, and we start summer classes next Monday. My meeting is in the morning, but I’ll probably spend the whole day at work getting ready for classes, so I can enjoy the weekend. Our summer classes run for about 2 1/2 weeks, after which we’ll have a week or so off before the fall semester starts, after which I’ll have a baby and my life of leisure will come to a screeching halt. So I’m milking these last few days for all their worth — beach, wine, sleep, beer, food, the gym, gardening, peace and quiet.
I thought I’d have more to post about during my vacation, but nothing other than maximum indulgence in that list above has been going on, and it’s really not that interesting.
Hope all is well with whoever you are, wherever you may be.