Thursday, April 14, 2016

Tokyo to DC

The Japanese tradition of communal bathing in hot springs, or onsen, isn't what it once was since everyone has their own bath now. Te Japanese bathtub style, furo, is a deep tub, which we found everywhere we went, including Okinawa. I usually took showers.

We walked awhile to make it to the Yanaka section of Tokyo. We found some old wooden structures and some Buddhist temples. A few buildings survived both the 1923 Great Kanto earthquake and the 1945 Allied bombing of Tokyo. These two reasons and the Meiji Restoration are why Tokyo's structures tend to be fairly new.

We made our train to the airport by a minute. On the train, an elderly lady made some tiny paper cranes for Candace and gave them to her. Then we had to figure out how to take the cranes with us without crushing them.Traveling on the train to and from Narita, you can see neighborhoods with smaller houses and buildings with seemingly out-of-place random skyscrapers towering above.

We ate ot the airport. I had roast duck soba- hot- which wasn't that good, but Candace liked her sashimi sushi mix. We saw wasabi Kit Kats and also bean paste flavor, but they were in ten packs, so we didn't buy them.

The long plane ride was much better than the one to Tokyo. The food on United, however, was terrible each time. After the first bite of our meal yesterday, I told Candace, "We're not in Japan anymore," with a pained look on my face.

We made it through customs in Chicago. We didn't get the scooter until baggage claim, so we used a manual wheelchair. This became a problem, because the customs line for wheelchairs was 30 minutes, but the US citizen line had no wait. So Candace decided to walk through the US citizen line on my arm.

At O'Hare, you have to go through security again to get to your connecting flight. Getting to the gate was like going through a labyrinth and the scooter all but lost its charge. But we made it on the plane to DC just in time.

The plane landed early and we got our scooter and our checked bag. Then I got a text that my mom had gone to the wrong airport. We charged the scooter for a few minutes, but then waited outside. I couldn't get a hold of her to tell her where we were waiting or to get her ETA. Apparently, she took a circuitous route.

When she called, she had parked far away and said her phone was dying. I thought about asking her to try to pick us up, but if she didn't have a phone to rely on, we might never see her again. It then took her a half hour to find us, because she went in a circle. It gave us some time to charge the scooter though.

On the map, we found a much shorter way to get to her car. The scooter made it without issue. But then my mom didn't know which level she had parked on. She kept looking around the rental car level. I kept shouting at her that this was the wrong level, but I was too tired to chase after her.

That was level 2. Then we went to level 1, daily parking, but we couldn't find her car. I went to see if there was a parking garage lower, but there wasn't. Then I went up to level 3, but it was still rental cars. Finally on level 4 I found her car. It had taken 30 minutes from when we entered the parking garage to when we found her car. We got home two hours later than planned.

No comments: