if there is something to recommend about 22 hours of plane time it is that point in time when the exhaustion overrides the excitement of the trip and you are so tired you can finally sleep. for me that was just before tokyo.
united wouldn't let me check in for the flights to singapore which i had suspected could be a problem with a one way ticket and anticipating this i had booked a bus from singapore to malacca in malaysia for proof of onward travel. even with this documentation united was unhelpful and required i purchase a return flight before i could check in. i took my boarding passes and new ticket receipt, went through security and immediately called to cancel and get a full refund on my ticket [i asked and got the ticket agent to waive my $30 ticketing fee].
here i have to vent because this is the perfect example of again where we are so completely caught up in bureaucratic processes that common sense is left behind. in the back of my mind there is a thought forming that perhaps if even united airlines thinks this is a bad idea then perhaps the universe is sending me a message.
flying over alaska, the bering sea and russia was amazing. the mountains were completely covered in snow and looked so treacherous with big ribbons of water winding through like a huge maze. over the bering sea the ice floes were still covering the water and watching, even from 37000 feet was mesmerizing.
in tokyo there was a long line for the women's restroom and an old asian woman jumps the line and bangs on doors until someone comes out. i can appreciate showing respect for elders but it felt like instead of others honoring her it was she who was disrespecting others. there were snorts from younger asian women in the line but no one said anything.
as the anticipation of my trip mounted i was balancing separation anxiety with my laptop which i knew was too heavy to carry with me. in a last minute decision [literally hours before being dropped at the airport] i picked up a sub note book which i've been using to skype and access the internet. my anxiety over being disconnected is less although i keep hearing the phantom vibrations of my blackberry and i wonder how long that will last.
starbucks is everywhere and i'd like to complete the trip without ever stopping into one but i'm feeling weak already. it's like i can feel it calling to me from my room in little india. 'come here, it's cozy, i'll give you magic powers'.