Currently on the plane to LA. American Airlines operates somewhat differently to Qantas but is still familiar enough I suppose.
We were in Japan for about 7 hours of lounging about. Upon entry my camera was detected in the metal detector. Normally I suppose this would be okay but here the Police can’t speak any English, and silently signal and wave you where to go, or tap you on the shoulder without a word. Unnerving. Regardless I found a whole heap of interesting stuff. Multiple bins for efficient recycling, crazy advanced looking vending machines, buying lunch from people who don’t speak English etc. It was awesome! When we bought lunch the waiter will quickly sneak up behind us and give us our food and when we notice him he quietly slinks away and bows to us. Quirky, yet cool. A lot of the bowing and the “irrashaemase!” can be seen throughout. And all these people can speak English (since we’re still at the airport)! I shiver to think of the communication problems we will run into whence I actually enter Japan a week from now. But this gives me an opportunity to practice my failing Japanese.
I’ve also run into several instances of Engrish already, I’ll put a photo up if I get the chance. What else was there… as yes the internet cafes were pathetically slow. I think they are running on 486s or something. Not only that they are heavily Yahoo sponsored, so whenever you try to go into Gmail internet explorer just shuts down. The keyboard is amazingly frustrating too. The space bar is only about 5 cm wide and the rest of the space is used to convert between alphabets (which I kept hitting by accident).
Japan was cool and all, but alas! We had to leave and goto LA. Speaking of an Alas, Alastair does not have his insurance certificate, which is a problem when trying to get past USA customs. We’ll see what happens.