Japan: Day One and Two

Wow. Where do I even start. This has been the longest and most exhausting haul of my life. In a nutshell, I left Kansas City at 8 or so on the 22nd. Accounting for the time travel fuckery of westbound flights, I am just now settling in on the eve of the 23rd. I transferred at Dallas to go to Narita (Tokyo), which was one beefy 12+ hour flight. But that was the easy part. I went through customs there and it was hot and ehh but I got through it by some stroke of a miracle. And from there I flew to Nagoya.  And that’s where I found myself indisputably fucked having never traveled a big city or lived in one by myself EVER, not to mention one so Kanji riddled as a Japanese city. The 4th largest. Like New York’s asian bro. That said, I’ve never done things that it turns out a lot of people are quite good at such as buying train tickets and feeding them through the ticket booths.

I bought my first ticket by speaking with a man who knew English well enough to tell me which station I needed to travel to. So that was cool except I am just completely braindead retarded when it comes to finding the right boarding platform and knowing when and where to get off. It didn’t help that there were about 3 times as many stops as Google Maps predicted there would be. Anyway, I made it to the Shinkansen station and had to buy ANOTHER train ticket to get to Kyoto. This is where it got dicey because Shinkansen and Limited Express use--to me-- quite a different system of ticket purchasing. I only bought the fare, not the ticket itself, because the English menus of the ticket machines were vague and I was trying to be a badass about it. Got my FARE ticket and fed it through the booth a couple times without success in front of hundreds of people screaming “bakagaijin” in their heads. Frustrated, I talked to an officer who knew about as much English as I know Japanese. It was a difficult conversation, but it got me over to a queue where I was able to buy the other half of my ticket and board. Then as fate would have it I heaved all my luggage up the wrong flight of stairs onto the wrong platform, so I had to hurry to the other one before the train left. I think this is a good time to mention that I wouldnt be acting like such a grand pussy about any of this if it werent for the fact that I had an extra 40 lbs on my person while pulling around a 50 lb suitcase. All day. ANyWAY. I got on the Shinkansen toward Kyoto without much issue. But Kyoto had to be the final boss and be the trickiest part of it all. According to my Google Maps, the best way to get to my Hostel from the JRRail station was via subway. Google Maps was also unaware of all 90 lbs of my luggage and thus the infinite staircases a la Super Mario 64 all but kicked my ass into a million pieces. I got off on the right stop somefuckinghow and from there it was an 8 block stumble to my room. It was the most dreadful 8 blocks of my life because it was pouring rain, I was carrying my life in 3 bamgs and my socks were soaked. I found the street, but started freaking out because its a sketchy narrow side street and I couldnt find the building I had StreetViewed two days earlier. I didn’t go down a block far enough. It would have been simple had I not walked back to the main road out of fear that I accidentally turned a block too early. So lots of back and fourth.

Anyway, I got checked in and comfy and took a shower and now I am just ecstatic to be in Japan. Facing the public transit nightmare in the future will probably become a much more positive experience due to an extreme lack of luggage in the coming days and a better grasp on the system in general. It was a long, endless and brutal learning experience, but I am so content now. I’m good. Like let’s go.


About playbradlyplay

This entry was posted in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.

One Response to Japan: Day One and Two

  1. Penney Barrett says:

    Oh Brad! OMG! If you got rankled, I would of broke down and cried! You are going to be an experienced world traveler by the time I see you again! So scary just reading this. Thank God you made it safe and sound and that Japan is supposed to be a safe country to travel in! Love you, stay safe!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s