I take that back. Airline travel is the gutter-trash speed of the travel world. There’s no way to go about it without feeling tense, irritable and paranoid about your fellow travellers.
It’s just not a good idea to combine a) going somewhere new with b) having to do it really quickly.
I had to go to Japan to get the 12-month visa yesterday. First, I almost burst my bladder on the 3-hr bus to the airport – the one I got up at 3:35am to get. I almost got stuck sitting next to the most idiotic dimwit from El Paso, fucking texas. The numbskull had sat in the wrong seat though, thank christ.
The plane was delayed 40 minutes taking off due to retardism and bad weather. This stressed me because I was supposed to get to a certain place by a certain time at the other end. There was about 25 other whiteys (including an afro-american) doing the same thing, and as someone pointed out — the whole thing looked a lot like that dumb tv show, Race Around the World. Everyone was pally for a while but the closer we got to the immigration office in Osaka, the more I wanted to run ahead and be first in the queue, as did most others — and somehow I always manged to be near last in these things.
It didn’t matter too much because all the visas were processed at the same time. I had a splitting headache; the first in 6 weeks.
Sidenote – what I saw of Japan, it looks definitely wealthier, way more free-standing dwellings instead of high-rises here. Not as visually gaudy or overtly capitalist as here. More thought put into architectural asthetics than here. They look like they get more protein because the cops looked like they were older than 16. The women weren’t as attractive. Heaps and heaps of bicycle riding … on the footpath, so lookout! And things were way more expensive: 14 bucks for a 1-way twenty minute train ride? Get outta here.
Then the plane was late leaving and so I was late getting back – and the geniuses at the recruitment office who dreamed up this hairbrain paperchase didn’t factor in delays, or getting through customs and immigration either — so I missed my bus back to eetchon – once from the airport, and once from east-seoul. I was running from plane to bus to train, transfer to another train only to find out that I was half an hour dead. The bus counter guy said ‘gwan ju’ then get a taxi, and this other arsehole, who in some demented way, was thinking he was being helpful, said I should follow him, so I did — and I got a ticket to Gwang Ju – which certainly sounds the same – but is right down the bottom of the peninsula. I didn’t find this out til midnite, and even though the fucken bus was going through eeetchon – they wouldn’t stop for me, no matter what. Thankfully, this was explained to me before I got on it. I got a refund and ended up getting a taxi with some other loser guy who missed the last bus, and it cost 40 000 dollars. I got home at 1am.
The alarm in my otherwise useless mobilefone, I discovered, hadn’t been adjusted properly. And so it went off at half three again this morning. I was so fucked that I got up, had a shower and got dressed before I opened the blinds and wondered why it was still dark. I went back to bed.