Tag Archive: airplane

Nov 30

In the Air

I guess that one hour and forty-five minutes isn’t so late in the grand scheme of things, but it’s hard looking down at my watch and thinking if we were on time, we would be landing in 30 minutes.


I can’t believe they still have the same movies that they had when I flew over a month ago. I thought they changed them every month! I watched a couple, but then got bored, so I’ve switched on my laptop (hooray for in-seat power outlets) and caught up on my email.


I guess it would be a good idea, I supposed, to write something for the blog.


Don’t really have anything to write about.


I really have no idea what is in store for me for the next 60 days. Father’s memorial, sure, mother’s birthday, yes, Xmas and New Years, check. But no real idea of where I’m going to be or what I’m going to be doing. I brought along my TASCAM US-800 USB mixer and two microphones just in case I decide to record some songs or something. Forgot the AC cable for the US-800, though.


One thing is clear is that my father’s death changes everything and moves my life schedule ahead about 10 years… despite the fact that my career schedule is about five years behind where I’d like it to be. My remaining family needs me, and I am going to have to make more frequent and longer trips to Canada. This jaunt, thought, will be my longest one until at least next fall: if everything goes well, my spring and summer are spoken for (papoose on the way). But starting from 2014, I think I need to find a way to spend at least three months a year in Canada.


That’s actually a hard mental shift for me. My identity is wrapped up quite tightly in Yokohama. I also have a sense of pride about being part of my community there. My long-range plan has always included spending a portion of my time in Canada, but my prior visions had all related to my professional life: touring a show, maybe. Just going there seems weird.


So everything’s up in the air right now. YTG ensemble rehearsals have been suspended while I’m gone; the winter semester of classes don’t have a venue yet (except for the voice class); my Canadian family is seriously changed, and the pieces haven’t stopped falling yet… probably more stuff I can’t think of at the moment.


Hmm. Lights are going from blue to pink. Food service probably starting soon. Better put away the laptop and get ready.

Jun 10

Air Canada – B-

I’m writing this on the second leg of a flight to Toronto from Tokyo.  I am doing so because a) the seat has a power outlet for my tablet PC, and b) because the in-flight entertainment is not so great.


On the first leg of the journey, I took my usual watch-as-many-movies-as-possible approach, but found two hiccups in that plan:

  1. This month’s movie selections are not that great.  What I ended up watching: The Wolfman (C-), The Book of Eli (starts as a B+, drops to a D- in the last act), Percy Jackson & The Olympians (C), Dorian Grey (B), and the National Film Board’s Blackflies animated short (A+).
  2. The system is goddamn annoying!  When you start playing any item over 10 minutes long, the system forces you to sit through about seven minutes of ads.  It’s bad enough that you can’t fast forward them like you can on other airlines, but you also can’t adjust the volume.  Which means that if the volume is at max (mine was) before you watch your first movie, the adverts blast your ears.

Rest of the flight:


Food = tolerable.

Cabin crew = friendly and nice.  Points deducted for not asking the guy sitting next to me to turn off his PSP during takeoff and landing.  The crew on the second leg did this, but he pulled it out again right after takeoff, while we were still climbing.


Okay, I’m bored of this now.  I will watch another bad movie.

Jun 10

Calgary AEROPORT – Ho-Hum

Air Canada flight 10 landed about 20 minutes late at Calgary, and those of us continuing onto Toronto on AC10 disembarked, went through customs (no matter how friendly I try to be, I always piss the Canadian customs guys off—this time it was answering “I live there” when asked what I was doing in Japan), picked up our bags, went through the final customs line and then checked-in again.  The woman at the connecting flights check-in booth then told me where to go:


The gate was B23, but the security gate was A, due to construction.  Her directions: go out the door, turn right, go up the escalator.  I went out the door, was forced to turn left due to a partition, looked right, saw no escalator, saw all the ‘connecting flights’ signs pointing left, saw an escalator on the left, and got fucking confused.


There were no airport information staff, and the Calgary whitehat volunteers were nowhere to be seen (there were three of them right when we got off the plane—not sure why, because there’s only one way to go from there).  I followed a couple of women I recognized from my flight, and managed to find an escalator waaaaayyyyyy down to the right eventually, which led me to the correct security gate.  I’m shocked that the non-native speakers made it to the connecting flight, but they did somehow.


I got to the security gate, got through without setting off any alarms—I was told by the guy in the army surplus store in London, England that my boots were hard-toe but not steel-toe.  He was wrong, and I set off the metal detector at Narita.


One thing about this kind of half-assed direct flight is that my itinerary made no mention of the boarding or departure time from Calgary.  So until I got to the gate, I had no idea how long I had to, well, get to the gate.  In the end, it was a good thing I didn’t stop to use a vending machine or anything, because we boarded almost right away.