Day 36-37: The Long Trip Home

Here it is...the last post in my series for this trip to Israel and around Europe.  Can you believe I was away for 37 days?  I can't!  It was quite an adventure.

To get back to Japan from Israel wasn't the easiest, but I liked having an extra night in Spain with less travel hours on the actual day I headed home.

From Madrid I boarded a plane to Beijing.  Amazingly on time!  I was convinced that by this time, with only 1 cancelled flight and no delays, I was bound to have something go wrong at the end.
As usual, I ordered a vegetarian meal.  Sometimes it is nice because I get more fruits and veggies.  Seeing as I was on Air China, I knew whatever I got would come with rice.  I was right!
But wait!  For the second meal on this flight, I got more veggies and fruits, but this time there was no rice!  And they didn't even give me a roll.  Thankfully all I had to do was ask and I was served a nice, warm roll.
When I arrived in Beijing it was just before 6 am and extremely quiet in the airport.  I decided to get set up with internet (free, but you have to scan your passport to get an access code) and do some work.  I had papers to grade and things to get caught up with, so the quiet early morning hours in the airport provided me just the right environment to focus and get work done.

I still had some time before my flight to Tokyo so I headed to Starbucks for a coffee and an egg and cheese sandwich.  I have no idea what meal I was really supposed to be eating, but with the sun just rising, breakfast seemed like a good choice.  
Then I made the exceptionally long trek to find my gate.  Didn't realize this airport was massive!  It didn't help that I was all the way at the far end of a long hallway.  Next stop: Tokyo!  Luckily I was able to book a flight into the International terminal at Haneda Airport.  Narita is the main International airport and Haneda is the domestic airport, but they do have a small international terminal too.  This is preferred for me because it saves me money and time by not having to take a shuttle bus from one airport to the other.  I can only get home from Haneda, so if I don't have to go to Narita, I am much better off, and happier.
More food?  Once in Tokyo I realized I was hungry again and it was around dinner time.  I ordered some pasta with mushrooms.  It felt good to be back in Japan and able to speak a little in Japanese.
Finally!  I boarded my flight to Misawa and headed home to see my husband.
All went smoothly and I was home right on time!  It's a miracle I didn't have more issues than I did while away.  The biggest things were a cancelled flight and a lost camera.

It felt good to be back.  I unpacked a little.  I really just wanted to give my husband the things that I bought for him and show him the magnets I picked up along the way.  We collect magnets, so I made sure to pick one up from all places that I went that we didn't already have one from.  These made a nice addition to our collection on the fridge.
Whew!  That was a lot of travel.  I am back home for now, but I actually do have some more travel in the near future.  Again, professional conferences will lead me to a new and exciting location to explore the local culture and learn more in my field (at the conference).  Where am I heading next?  Australia!

QUESTIONS:  What is the longest you have ever travelled away from home?  What is the highest number of flights you have taken in order to get from point A to point B? What kinds of souvenirs do you collect? 


Special K said...

What I like about this how you listened to your hunger and let it guide you rather than a clock or what you think you should eat. You have such a strong spirit, which is why you can travel and trust and learn, all at the same time.

Roz @ weightingfor50 said...

I have THOROUGHLY enjoyed your travel posts Melinda. Thank you so much for sharing with us.

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