22nd Feb 2010, 11pm, we start to fall in at Changi Airport.
Shirley’s son has exams the next day and Michelle’s husband was too flying off the next day and my parents working the next day, we decided to meet earlier that night so we won’t be disturbing the rest of our family members since our check-in is at 3am in the morning.
11pm plus – Nellie, our “ah ma” gave us a surprise when she came to the airport and gave us a send-off. We chat till almost 1am and we decided to “chase” ah ma home so she could rest early. We know of course, since she’s a super women, she don’t really need much sleep, but then again, we want her to rest more.
Check-in started at 3.30am and after a series of questioning at the check-in (a usual routine for anyone who is departing to USA on American-owned airliners) we finally manage to clear customs and got into the transit area.
|Having fun in Transit Hall|
I guess we were a little over-excited.
For me, it’s another trip to USA after a year. For Shirley, it’s hers after 10 years and for Michelle, it’s her first. Well, our excitement are validated. 😛
Our flight departed at 5.50am for Narita International Airport, Japan to transit to our next flight to Los Angeles.
Another thing I haven’t said I love being on an airplane is the spectacular views Nature have to offer right out of the window. Now you have noticed why i love to take the window seat now, huh!
The sunrises as we approach Japan is always stunning.
This trip’s sunrise was exceptional compared to the one I have taken in 2009.
You can also see my other photos in my previous post.
To us, as we have some uncertainties on the convention itself, the sunrise was a very good omen for us. If was as if God is telling us that everything will be fine.
We even said to each other that we have to send this photo to ah ma.
Of course, how can you not take the food in the air??
Well, I did forgot the first meal!
Our plane is now flying into Japan and we are slowly descending to Narita.
“Welcome to Japan, ladies!”
Our plane landed safely in Narita (of course, duh!) and we had to wait to be towed to a parking lot.
One thing about Narita is that you get to experience stepping off the plane to the tarmac and then jump onto a bus that will take you to the terminal.
Of course, everyone will be trying to squeeze themselves into that bus, so the sight wasn’t pretty.
Besides it was in such a rush, we didn’t have the time to even bothered to take a picture of ourselves right outside the plane. Oh well…
At least we were not left behind on that tarmac.
That’s all that matters!
Of course, how can I not resist to take a picture in that bus? I have to!!!
And the ladies graciously posed for me, even they were s-l-i-g-h-t-l-y reluctant.
They said their hair were still messy. Not nice.
I don’t think so. “Natural” goes a long way.
Then once in the terminal, another round of checks began.
Japan is as strict at USA, so…
When going thru the scanner —
laptop separate tray- check!
Liquids and gels in a ziplog in a separate tray – check!
Drink finish water bottle and empty it – check!
Coat off onto the tray – check!
Last but not least – my back pack….
Then cross the “human scanner” -> custom officer check passport and boarding pass.
Pick up items and stuff them into the backpack, and out into the terminal I go.
I told the two ladies said I want to eat mac in Japan, but all Japanese words, don’t understand.
HOW TO ORDER LIDDAT?!?!?!?!?!?!
So, just take peekture nia~
The ladies, however said want to eat Japanese food.
Ah yes, Japanese food.
So, we went searching for that bowl of ramen in the terminal when we stumbled upon a Japanese sweet store and next to it a mini Origami museum.
As usual, we went around trigger happy.
|US Dollar folded into a pot of flower.|
Continue looking for the smell of ramen and udon~
And some more trigger happy moments~
|It says Narita Hokusai Plaza…..|
|Michelle and Shirley|
And we found it!
It’s a restaurant called Tatsu, and since we only left like 35 mins to boarding our next flight, we bought the food to go. They understood us and manage to get their food to us pretty quickly.
Real good service.
So what did we buy?
Udon — 1000Yen
|Ginger Pork Rice|
Ginger Pork Rice — 1000Yen
Takoyaki — 700 Yen
|Michelle and Shirley|
So we actually brought the food and ate outside the next flight gate as we were afraid that we will miss our flight. Afterall, we don’t really understand Japanese and is best we waited there.
|Shirley and Me|
We shared the food as it was a bit expensive, but overall, really satisfying.
The udon noodles tasted very different from the ones we have back home and the pork is absolutely yummy.
I gotta remember to bring Yen next time instead of exchanging it in the terminal.
|Shirley enjoying the yummy food|
Again, Shirley mummy can’t help herself. She gotta pose for another yummy photo! heehee~
After which, we jump onto our next flight, the longest flight of the journey to Portland, where we will transfer to another domestic flight before arriving in Los Angeles International Airport.
On the flight, I cannot forget to take a photo of my in-flight food!!
|Curry Chicken Rice with Chicken Karage, Salad, Chocolate cake and a dinner roll.|
Michelle and Shirley had the Beef Bulgogi Rice (I don’t eat beef) and I gotta say, whoever made the chocolate cake really deserves a recognition. It’s nice and the standard of that cake never drop since the last time I sat on delta airlines one year back!
As light turns to darkness, we all shifted comfortably in our seat and slept.
Slowly, many hours passed, many toilet breaks, playing iphone games while we couldn’t sleep, watching movies and in between getting water from the galley to quench our thirst, we are inch-ing nearing to our destination.
|Flying towards morning|
One interesting thing on board this trans-pacific flight is that, we fly from a faster time zone to a slower time zone. So in mid-flight, I told the girls:
“Welcome to 23rd Feb 2010 — again.”
We giggled as we all got the cheap thrill of experiencing “time travel”.
|“Welcome to Portland”|
As our plane touch down in Portland, we were welcome by a beautiful mountainous view in its background. Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to captured it from my window seat.
|Michelle in Portland Int’ Airport|
|Storybook picturesque view of the houses|
After the usual USA custom checks and questions, we were all hungry.
And since we are already in the States, we started our first fast food joint.
|Me, Shirley and Michelle|
From the picture, you can tell we were very hungry.
We ate everything before we could take any pictures!
Shirley mummy was surprised that even fast food have such information to customers!
She was really impressed. Subsequently, all the restaurants and fast food we went had this information.
Quite impressive actually.
|Shirley and Michelle taking a breather|
We managed to take a breather before the next flight. To our surprise, William Fisher playing piano in the background.
Our connecting flight to Los Angeles International Airport!
This is the last leg and also a domestic flight.
Something interesting in taking a domestic flight was that, majority of the passengers were Caucasians.
|Inside the Domestic Flight|
And so you can see, almost all are blonds…
Except us 3 are Asians.
When the plane took off, the 2 other ladies feel soundly asleep, while I was fully awake.
So while they snooze, I took a breather myself, with coke and nuts.
After 2 hours of flight, we are finally in Los Angeles!!!
|In Los Angeles Airport|
We are so excited as ran to the end of the tunnel to grab our bags!
But of course, we didn’t ran. We took our time, literally.
|My luggage (pink), Michelle’s (bright green) and Shirley’s (Red and Black)|
That’s why when we reach the baggage belt, we only saw our luggage sitting there quietly, waiting for us.