Sunday, January 9, 2011

The Longest "Day" Ever

Instead of beginning at the beginning, we'll start at the airport. Thanks to help from Jaime, we were able to get ourselves and our large suitcase checked in very easily. We then headed off to security, where the line seemed okay, I mean I've waited through worse lines trying to get to Vegas. While waiting in line, a bunch of flight crew got in line in front of us, and then it was going to be our turn. I had all our stuff in bins, as well as our three carry on bags on the rollers, when one of the TSA officers tells me, 'This line is for crew only. You need to move over to the next line." Now I swear that there were other passengers in front of me who got through before the flight crew came along and obviously it wasn't marked well enough, but fine, whatever. So the next line over wasn't too bad but there were at least 10 people in front of us. I stacked up all my bins and started to attempt to move over to the other line, all while trying to wrangle Evan in the right direction. The TSA officer in the next line, a woman of course, told me to cut in the line so that there was only one person in front of us. She looked at the guy behind me and said,"If anyone has a problem with it, than too bad. The other officer should have made it clear before that the line was only for crew." I felt awful, I"m not one to take advantage because I might have it a little more difficult. We all make choices and I should have packed less, therefore making it easier to get through security. I nearly cried at this point, but held it together, and the guy behind me didn't seem all that irritated. After that we made it through without any other issues. 

We boarded the plane early and were all set up by the time the seats around us started to fill. Evan was excited as the plane took off, but was also very tired, because it was past nap time, so he was asleep, before we hardly even in the air. It is now just after 1pm Seattle time. He slept for about an hour, then watched a movie and had a few snacks. At this point I am reminded of two things: 1. Evan is better at traveling than I give him credit for. Of course if I had someone catering to my every whim so that I wouldn't throw a fit, I might be a better traveler too. 2. Evan is a better traveler than I am, but this really just goes back to my first point. It has only been a little under 4 hours and we still have 6 and a half hours left. I have no idea how I'm going to make it.

I listen to the last half of Toy Story 3, and then watch a movie on my own, but this really only brings us to the half way point, still a long ways to go. Some time about now, the man across the isle tells me how impressed he is with how Evan has behaved on the flight and actually tells me this several more times along the way. There were others on the plane that were not doing as well, one in particular who cried for at least 75% of the flight. 

Around 9pm Seattle time I could see that Evan was starting to get tired, and frustrated more easily. We still had almost 3 hours left, so I decided he needed to have rest. He wasn't that happy about it but didn't scream or cry. It took a while for him to fall asleep, even while listening to his Josh Grobin. Once asleep, he slept till about an hour before landing, I however hadn't slept at all. 
He was playing a computer game when we started our decent and I noticed that he was poking his ears. I had some mints, which I fished out and gave him a couple. He was still poking his ears and then started to cry. I tried to get him to eat some fruit snacks or even a piece of gum, but he didn't want any of those things. I called the stewardess to get a glass of water, I knew he had to swallow to release the pressure. The whole processes was about 5 min, before we had some water. As soon as he had a few swallows he was feeling better. He went back to the game and every time I noticed him poking his ear, I'd give him some more water and he was fine the rest of the flight.

After landing, and de-boarding, we had to go to immigration, baggage claim, and then customs. It was quiet a long walk to immigration, and Evan kept asking me if we were at the apartment yet. He was definetly done.. When it was our turn at the immigration counter, I had left the space on the form that asked about where we were staying and a telephone number blank. I had no idea what these were, other than the fact that Scott was working in Yokuska. Well this was not good. I explained that my husband was here for work and that he worked for the navy as a civilian. They then wanted to see my dependent ID. However they didn't appear to like that. The agent I had been talking to, then called someone else over, who didn't like my ID any better. He took it, along with our passports and forms and went into another room. Eventually they asked me to follow them into what appeared to be the immigration holding room, where another agent proceeded to ask clarifying questions. Finally I was able to provide them with what they wanted and they let us go. Some how in the process we were able to get our SOFA stamps, which allows us to stay longer than 90 days, usually as a dependent, because I don't have travel orders, I would have to make a seperate trip to the embassy. 
So after an additional half an hour, we got our checked bag, breezed through customs and were out the doors where Scott was waiting for us. To say Evan was excited to see him, would have been an understatement. 

We then got on the first of two trains to take us to the apartment, at 6:15pm Japan time, which would be 12:15am Seattle time. When we finally made it to the apartment it was after 9pm local time so 3am for the rest of you. Remember I haven't slept since the night before. I got Evan set up for bed, and took a much needed shower. I then helped him go to sleep, since he wanted mommy, and finally went to bed myself sometime after 10pm. I woke up once in the night to pee, but otherwise slept till morning. I was reminded at quarter to 6, that Evan needs a clock in his room so he knows when it is okay to get up, but overall a decent nights sleep. I think that Evan worded it best, when we stepped into the apartment for the first time, "Home, safe home." At least for the next 5 months.


  1. I forgot to run a spell check, so no comments about my poor spelling. I will do better next time, or maybe not.

  2. I'm sad. I don't see you much, but now I know I can't see you until June. That just makes it harder. :) Vacation in June. We should think about where we want to go. Also, why don't we email? I'm glad you made it there safely. Have lots of adventures and keep us updated.

  3. of course I will still e-mail. This was just easier than sending out mass e-mails to keep everyone updated. We have a telephone too, so we can talk on the phone as well.

  4. Happy to hear you made it safely to Japan. Isn't the train ride to Yokosuka take forever after flying all day. Can't wait to read about more of your adventures.

  5. Woohoo, so glad you decided to blog. Miss you guys like crazy, but you knew that already!