I’m still impressed by the fact that I can hop onto various modes of transportation and within a day find myself halfway across the planet. For some reason I still come away from each journey with a bit of wonder that it all worked. I arrived back on Cape Cod Saturday evening without incident, marking my first Christmas at home in eight years.
My trip started from Chieko’s hometown in Niigata, where it was and is snowing like the dickens. I usually get a little nervous about flying and making long trips, and that feeling was amplified a bit this time around with some anxiety about leaving Chieko and Ray behind.
I hopped a bullet train to Tokyo Station, about 1 1/2 hours away.
From there I boarded the Narita Express, which takes you to the airport in about an hour. I passed Tokyo’s newest monstrosity, the Sky Tree. It is huge.
I enjoyed a few pre-boarding glasses of wine as the sun set behind the plane that would be my home for the next 11 hours. The flight itself was fine aside from the part where I spilled wine all over my seat and pants. That was uncomfortable for a while, but fortunately I had two empty seats next to me so I could contort myself into some positions that were more conducive to sleeping than just sitting upright in a puddle of red wine.
After a brief layover in Chicago, where I caught the end of the Patriot’s game on TV, I boarded my short flight to Boston.
The hour drive from Boston to Cape Cod is always the most grueling part of the trip — so close, but not quite there. But we made it eventually. It’s good to be home, again.
After two days without jetlag, I thought I was in the clear. But here I am at 4:40 in the morning writing a blog, after hitting the wall and going to bed at 8:30 last night.
This is a very low key trip, and I’m content to do nothing but spend time with my family, visit a few friends, take trips to the beach, and eat more bacon than any man should. So far, so good.