Too lazy to write about the vacation :) so only gonna say it was a blast! Not nearly enough time to see everyone I wanted to see, and more importantly (yes people FOOD > you in case you didn't know...) I didn't even get to eat a chicken sub at Mike! Nor was I able to go to CafeSho... what a waste of a vacation tbh heh.
Needless to say, 4 hours of sleep accompanied by lots of eating and going out means 2 things: some extra weight and eventual collapse and sickness. Thus begins the story of the trip back. Zo I was supposed to come back on Tuesday, but had high temperature and ended up postponing until Friday to get better. The idea of getting quarantined for fear of bird flu outbreak was not appealing...
So begins the long trip back.
The flight from Beirut to Dubai was awesome. I was sitting on the very last row in the plane, and the whole section was quite empty. The cabin crew was having a party in the back area and would take turns to eat on the seats next to me, so we all became buddies :)
--> Time taken: 3:20 ish (all times will be ish coz I'm too lazy to check mkay)
--> Total time: 3:20
During the stop in Dubai, met Ele, a very nice Aussie going back to Indonesia, and so I had someone to chat with from there on (I NEED TO TALK TO SOMEONE! OR SOMETHING! OR MYSELF IF NONE ARE AVAILABLE!). We stayed on board while they cleaned up and waited for the new passengers to embark, so I took a couple photos of the tarmac from the back door. Will post them when I get back home.
--> Time taken: 1:40 (while reading these parts, just imagine each letter getting written as you
--> Total time: 5:00 read along, kinda like in the movies with the typewriter sound effects)
In the next part of the trip, the cabin crew was less pleasant. One (guy) was hitting on me, or just being annoying by asking me to buy him the huge red teddy bear the silly girl 2 rows in front of me had... either way, he was annoying. And another (also guy) was encouraging me to chat with the first one and to give him my PSP meanwhile... aba2ash 7adan yest7eh?! L3ama... Walla for the first time I appreciated the famous quote captain Kanaan Jr. (the useless one) keeps using: STOP HIRING MALE CABIN CREW FFS! Other than that, they had gay ass movies. I had tears in my eyes by the time The Switch was over.
--> Time taken: 7 (a bit less actually but rounding makes addition easier so shush)
--> Time it SEEMED like it took: 12:23 (no addition here so more accurate figures)
--> Total time: 12:00
Supposedly, there are daily flights from Kuala Lumpur (all the cool people call it KL so from hereon that's how we'll refer to it) to Tokyo at 11:00 (AM)... except on weekends yay! And as by then it was already 6:00 AM Saturday, the next flight was at 23:00. This meant I had... 17 hours in KL! Awesome. The good thing is that there are faaaaar worse airports to be stuck in for 17 hours. KL airport is just awesome. Walked around duty free area for an hour or so lugging around the baklava and arak I bought from Beirut duty free (more on that later) until I reached the airport hotel. The cheapest room goes for about 50$ for 6 hours. But it was fully booked. They told me to come back at 10:00. But by that time I had found... the movie lounge!
Right next to Starbucks (not that I buy anything there but for those that do it's cool), the movie lounge is a bunch of couches around 4 TV screens, where there are plugs and free internet (there's actually free WiFi everywhere). There was Good Luck Chuck on (or a censored version of it at least hehe didn't watch so donno). I took over a couch and one 4th season of How Ah Met Yo Mama and two meals later, it was already boarding time.
--> Time taken: 17:00
--> Total time: 29:00
Final stretch of the journey. Lots of Japanese people (the best people to be in large groups with, as opposed to Mediterranean people...). Lucky as I am, I had an empty seat next to me in all 3 flights that day(s). And there was a very nice Saudi family behind me. The father works in Japan so they all live there. Good choice imo. Slept most of the flight.
--> Time taken: 7:00 (also 6:45ish but rounding up again)
--> Total time: 36:00 ish
That's ofc without the hour and a half+ it took to get to Beirut airport in taxi, the 50 minutes or so it took from Narita to Zoya's using the skyliner train. COOL ASS TRAIN! And what's even cooler? Me not getting lost! Oh yeah! Then there's the 40 minutes to get to Haneda and hour and a half from there to New Chitose airport, then the 40-minute train ride to Sapporo station, and finally the 25-minute walk home. Usually takes 15, but I underestimated lugging my luggage in the snow! Mountains of snow you have to navigate around! Next time I'm taking a taxi...
Before the long walk though, as I came out of the station, there was a group of volunteers raising awareness for... something... I think it was related to the police coz there was a big mascot in police clothes? But I still have no clue what the sweet old lady told me.
She walked up to me and was like: bla bla bla bla bla. Kyoo wa (today is) bla bla bla bla bla.
Me: soo des ka (is that so)...
Sweet old lady (with a shine in her eyes that not only did this foreigner understand what she just said, but he also seems interested): blablablablablablablablablabla. Kyoosekete kudasai (please take care).
Me: hai! Wakarimashita (OK! Understood).
She gives me some fliers and free tissue (for the people that always have a runny nose, allergies, or are just cheap, Japan is an awesome place for you! Everyone gives out free portable packs of tissue with ads on them!) and sent me on my way. When I attempt to read the fliers and have an idea what the hell that was all about, I'll let youz know :)
Finally back home, I open the door, (and this is why Mules (that's Nadim) and I always vie for the leadership of the Mules club) and am pleasantly surprised by the warmth of my place... until I realize it's because I forgot the heating on... two weeks ago... nice big fat gas bill incoming :( Opened the tap, and the water came out nice and... brown hehe. Good thing I switched to mineral water after starting to smell metal in the tap water lol. Took the obento (lunch box) I bought from the combini (convenience store) and went to sit down and eat, and bumped my elbow on the stupid handle on the side of the bed. And down went the chicken and noodles face first onto the carpet... sigh. First signs of frustration arose then! Dirtiness will not be tolerated! And I was hungry... Now being a scout for 20 years, grabbing what I could with my hands and putting that back in the lunch box for eating later was not problem. It's the cleaning that was a pain, especially since cleaning delayed the aforementioned eating!! Did I mention I was hungry? Did I mention I'm hungry now?