The Bags Are Packed
And I am ready to roll! In about six and a half hours I will begin the train ride to Kansai airport about three and a half hours away. I will get to the airport at about 11:30am and that will give me four hours to get through security and find out where I am supposed to be.
Around 3:30pm I will board my plane and begin the ten hour flight back to the US. I will get to Los Angeles around 3:30pm on the same day, having gained a day because I am going back in time. At LAX I get to do the whole customs thing and then a two hour wait until I board yet another plane that will take me to Boise. While everything should be pretty straightforward and easy, it will still make for a long day. I am not sleeping tonight in hopes that by the time I land in Idaho and everyone is ready for bed, I will be too. It is my goal to not be jet lagged during my week long stay. The downside is that if I can't trick my body into going to sleep on Idaho time, I am going to have issues. Right now, I am on almost the exact opposite sleep schedule that Idaho people are and if I maintain this pattern, I am going to have a lot of nights without sleep and a lot of days in which I am groggy. I DO NOT WANT JET LAG!!
There are only two minor concerns that I have with the trip. First, I am bringing three bottles of the best sake I have found while living here back with me. I have been all over the net trying to figure out exactly how much I can bring into the US legally and I have yet to find a straight answer. One site said as much as I want as long as the dollar value of the actual alcohol in the beverage doesn't exceed $1.80. How in the hell am I supposed to know how much straight alcohol is equal to that dollar amount? Another place said up to one litre of booze and yet another place said, two bottles. The bottom line is that I am bringing three bottles and if they find out and have issues with that, I will solve the problem by enjoying a bottle right there in the customs line. The second possible problem I may face has to do with whether or not they will count my camera backpack (a very small backpack made for cameras) as a carry on or a personal item. I think I will be okay here and the bag will count as a personal item. If it does not, I am going to have issues. There is no way I will allow my camera to be checked after all of the stuff I have been reading about how much camera equipment gets ripped off when checked. One solution may be that I go to a gift shop and buy some tiny lame thing just to get a bag and put the camera bag into it. I have heard this works so I am hopeful I can find a solution if the need arises. Other than that, it should be smooth, albeit, long sailing.
I look forward to seeing everyone and feel somewhat like Santa Claus because I have more presents packed up than I do actual stuff for me to use and wear while on the trip. For once, I will have less to carry when I come back home than when I left. Anywho, I have a few more things to do and then I am going to go my favorite ramen place to eat my last official meal in Japan for a while. See you all in a matter of hours!