To The States! And Back Again. In Two Days.

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I booked a somewhat last minute flight (week ahead of time) for a weekend last week.  Flying through Tokyo ended up being cheaper than ICN-SFO non-stop, plus it meant I would get home a little bit earlier due to the timing of my connecting flight, so no complaints from me!

On Thursday I called a taxi and barely made it to the bus terminal right as my bus was about to leave.  The thing about Korea is when anything is on a schedule, they stick the schedule!  The ticket lady told me in no uncertain terms to “hurry!”  So I casually walked out to the bus and boarded.  It then proceeded to rain.  And rain, and rain…

Check-in was a breeze, due to the ability to check in online… I got my tickets printed at the kiosk and breezed relatively quickly through security.  Due to the Asian Games going on, they made me take off my shoes… That was a bummer.

Once I was airside, I noticed Asiana had their single A380 parked on the tarmac- 1 of 1 so far, they have a few more on order though.

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I was also not aware that these windows opened… “How do I fly this thing again??”  Also notice how this gate was designed for… Bigger aircraft…  The jetway isn’t exactly proportional!

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I boarded the plane and scored a bulkhead seat.  I also appreciated how the lady across the aisle from me used our overhead bin so I had to go back a row to put up my carry on… 😡

The flight to Japan was uneventful, other than being stuck in the middle with no real way to… move…  I also can’t get over what they call airplane food nowadays.

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I mean seriously… WHAT IS THAT.

As we approached Narita, I looked out the window and noticed it seems to be clearer than Korea is.  That, and everything just looks… Cleaner.  Even from the air.  Japan is awesome, I want to go back.

We landed, deplaned, and I literally walked out, went around a corner and up an escalator, through the shortest security line ever, and down an escalator and I was already within 300 feet of my next gate.  It was that simple; awesome!  I had time to kill so I figured that I could give this place a shot:

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Everything was single seating, with a few small tables.  You could either sit looking at the tarmac or sit in front of the sushi chefs, I sat looking at the tarmac.

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I got a “chef special” plate.

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I was very, very impressed.  The sashimi in the back was amazing, as was the salmon egg, and the tuna (in front) was also really good.  It’s hard to explain, but the individual pieces weren’t cold like you get in the states, instead they were hand temperature.  That and the fish simply melts in your mouth, and the rice has a completely different texture from what I’m used to.  They were also more liberal with the wasabi, and it was quite potent!  I was really happy I found this place, and looking back it actually has really good reviews online.  If it’s this good in the airport, I want to see how good it is in Tokyo!

Then I got this on the plane.

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WHY DOES AIRPLANE FOOD SUCK!

I had a great view of water condensation out the window.

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I couldn’t really sleep no matter how hard I tried.  A bunch of ancient old people left their overhead dome lights on and I was sitting two rows back from the shared TV screen so every time that went white it blinded the insides of my eyelids.  That, and their movie selection on that leg sucked.  I don’t feel like watching a show on some German painter.  TWO HOURS LONG.

It was cool to listen to the flight deck while we were taking off though; that was cool.

Breakfast sucked.

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We finally landed then it was off through security again for my last connecting flight… Which took forever to get off the ground.

My dad picked me up from the airport and what do you know…

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And someone joined us!

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Later that evening it was a family dinner at Yardhouse.  I ordered the usual.

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And I guess Fresno now has a Yogurtland.  Who knew?

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So after experiencing October 2nd twice, it was finally October 3rd.  I went over to the duplex that my dad was building to check out the progress.  It’s coming along!

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It was framed in 3 days.  Pretty impressive!

My brother had the day off so we all went out for pizza for lunch.

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I grew up on this place; I wish Me n Eds was a nationwide chain.

My brother found Surge online through Amazon, which sold out in less than an hour.

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For dinner, everyone came over and we had the food I miss most, steak.

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Victoria came up that night, unfortunately she couldn’t make dinner.  😦

The next morning we all went to my grandmothers funeral.  It was nice to see everyone together and we all had a wonderful time chatting.  🙂  More info on the service can be found here:

Adalena’s Service

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Everyone came over to our house afterwards and we sat around and chatted it up, until dinner time was approaching.  When I was in SoCal the only way to decide on dinner was by using Yelp.  Well, we made use of Yelp.  And ended up going to a place we’ve been to a million times.  Sometimes, you have to do what your heart desires.

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The next morning, it was time to depart…

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I got molested by the TSA agent at the airport.  He felt my pants pocket, where I had forgotten to take out my earbuds, and asks “WHAT IS THAT??” So I pull out my earbuds and he inspects them.  Then he feels my pants pocket and goes “WHAT IS STILL IN THERE????” at which point I pull out a gum wrapper, and hand it to him.  He literally inspected my gum wrapper.  Inspected.  Then says it’s ok and hands it back to me.  In the process of handing it back to me, I say “that’s trash… I don’t need it back…”  And he gets moody and tells me he can’t take my belongings and that I am now “free to go.”  I’m sorry, I wasn’t aware I was being detained?  Are you kidding?

Then I go to grab my valuables from the xray machine.  Just my luck, the pudgy TSA lady has my bag in her hands and tells me in matter of fact terms that my bag requires additional screening.  Great.

So she takes it to the side and searches my carry on.  She goes through every inch of my bag and unfortunately finds my hair gel that I was smuggling.  I’ve smuggled hair gel every single time so far and NOTHING has ever happened.  Why they suddenly caught it this time, I have no idea.  So she says that it’s over the limit and I can’t take it with me, either I can forfeit it, check my bag, or give it to someone else.  I forfeit it because I’m carrying my laptop and I’m not about to check a bag with a laptop.  That’s stupid.  I couldn’t help but be angry though; it’s hair gel.  It’s not dangerous.  There is no difference between 3 oz and 9 oz… some of these TSA rules are just downright stupid.  I think TSA in general is a joke, typically all you need to have as a qualification is a heartbeat.  Can you breath?  Check!  You have the job!  And they take their jobs so seriously too, as if they’re ever important police officers.  And what’s up with the naked scanning machine?  I have got to get Global Entry…

I took pictures of my food on the plane trip back but it was just… Terrible.  I was the aisle seat and a larger dude was in the seat next to me, the in flight entertainment sucked, and the flight was super long due to headwinds.  Sure I was cranky about my hair gel, but United goes out of their way to make people in Economy feel miserable.  Whatever.

It was too short of a trip, I have to admit.  After not seeing my family or girlfriend in 3 months, two days isn’t really enough.  Over Christmas I’ll have a lot more time.  I also must say that doing that much flying for that little amount of time is pretty brutal, next time I’m going to try taking an Ambien when I get on the plane so I can just knock out.  Hahaha!  But seriously.

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