Monday, January 21, 2008

The End is in Sight

Today was a rough start. 4:30 a.m. is never an easy time to begin the day. On an early morning Saturday, the traffic is lighter and it is only 45 minutes to the airport through Bangkok's dark streets. And like airports everywhere, there is no down time, as crowds enter and depart in a continuous stream under bright lights that make your sleep deprived eyes burn.

I'm not ready to leave or for the adventure to end but like every journey there's a beginning and an ending.

The plane takes off over the glow of Bangkok's night lights. Five hours later we arrive in Tokyo's Narita airport where a group of us from the flight are efficiently gathered by Japanese ground crew, checked off and hustled to our transfer plane. Unfortunately, hustling takes on a new meaning as long lines at security take precious minutes and soon there are few minutes left before the next flight leaves.

Toilets of the world - one day I will write about that but for now let me share this. A trip to a Japanese bathroom found this gem. A toilet with an arm that offered more options than I had time to read. Yes, I know, reading in a public washroom, a fairly unattractive thought but this toilet was one of a kind. It offered everything from industrial flush and/or bidet to a flush sound to add to the actual or a musical flush if you preferred. So, having never seen the like - I have to share at least the armrest of this interesting contraption.

I haven't seen television in almost a month but nine hours on a plane with a television screen planted in the back of the seat behind you is too tempting to ignore. Too tired to do anything that involves much thinking I eat and watch television as the plane roars through the night and into the sunrise of a new day over Vancouver, a new day that dawned yesterday over Asia.

"Thanks to the Interstate Highway System, it is now possible to travel across the country from coast to coast without seeing anything."
Charles Kuralt


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