Even though I’m already on a plane somewhere over the Pacific, somehow, it still hasn’t hit me. It just feels…surreal. Did I really just board a one-way flight to Asia? You’d think that after all the traveling I’ve done I’d be used to it by now; perhaps it’s just because of my zombie-like daze of exhaustion. I have been programming around the clock for nearly a week straight in an attempt to get all my code up and running before the departure; even last night at 3am my room was still a pile of circuits and wires. I didn’t finish packing until mere hours earlier.
Oh well, at least this time I’m pretty much as prepared as I could hope to be for such a trip. Sure, another day or two to wrap up the posts from Europe might’ve been helpful – but I’m no stranger to rushing hastily off into the wild blue yonder. And I did manage to finish the new radar hardware implementation, as well as read the entire SE Asia Lonely Planet cover-to-cover.
Yeah, I think I’m ready 🙂
On my way to Bangkok I had a very brief one-hour layover in Tokyo. It’s the first time I’ve set foot on Japanese soil since Halloween 2008 – and the longest I’ve been away since first moving there after college.
Oh my God, do I miss it. I really have to move back there some day. I’m not sure why, but there really is nowhere else in the world that calls out to me quite like Japan – for as excited as I was to at last be heading to SouthEast Asia, a part of me almost hoped I’d miss my layover so I could spend even just one day revisiting my second home.
Maybe if I find myself in Asia long enough I can head back next spring for the cherry blossoms. We’ll see how things go. I just wish this damned ridiculous exchange rate would hurry up and sort itself out 😥
When I landed in Bangkok more 24 hours after stepping through my front door in LA, I was slightly concerned about being allowed into the country. Although I did have a prearranged multiple-entry visa, I was arriving on a one-way ticket without any sort of proof of onward travel. But thankfully, I made it through without a hitch. I’m pretty sure the immigration agent didn’t speak a word of English anyway.
And after my first real Thai meal – a bowl of steaming hot fish soup at the airport cafeteria (for $1.25!), I caught the last bus into town, arriving at the guesthouse just after midnight.
Total door-to-door travel time: 25 hours.
Man, am I tired.