Japan Day 358 (Last Day in Japan)

Today I woke up very early as I had to catch a train to the airport. While my flight didn’t leave till 10:50 am, I still had to get up at 5 am to make sure I had everything packed and make sure we could take the train which we booked for 7:06 am. The reason we took a very early train is that it is always suggested that you come to an airport 2 hours before the flight time to make sure you have no problems with check in and security checks. After packing away everything, which wasn’t much as I didn’t take much out of my bag last night, except for some things that required charging and my computer for uploading my pictures, I ate a small bun for breakfast and then took my bags and went with my mom and dad down to the lobby where check out was very easy.

Leaving the hotel, we saw that Shinjuku was rather quiet today, most likely because it was Saturday. Much to our benefit, we quickly went to Shinjuku train station, where we rode on the Narita Express train, which took just a little over 1 hour to get to Narita, much faster then any bus. On the way there, I expressed my concerns about my luggage as I was a little over the weight when I last checked, and I didn’t know if that would be an issue. I was also worried Singapore would throw a fuss over the carry on luggage. Understanding my concerns, my parents took my Chobbo plush toy, and made plans in case that I had to take things out of my bag, they would wait till late to check in. I didn’t want them to risk loosing their flight, so I told them to check in and if things went bad, I would post my stuff, but I have the feeling they will still wait and worry with me anyway. On the train, I also noticed my pocket WiFi was no longer connected to the network. I guessed over the night, they disconnected my connection which was a little annoying, but at least I knew that it went through. I took the pocket WiFi apart and moved the sim in the wrong way to make sure for sure that I wouldn’t get any international roaming charges. Last night, my mother had grabbed all my wooden things in my bag and stored it in one place, so that when it came to customs in Australia, I would only need to show them one section of my bag, and not have them take my entire luggage apart. Thankful for that, and for everything, I checked our tickets to see which terminals we had to go to. To my horror, we were leaving from different terminals! This made things difficult for me, so I gave as much instructions as possible as we wouldn’t be able to contact each other. When it came time to leave, my dad helped with my baggage, and after nice hug, I waved goodbye.

Taking my bags through the security check, which turned out just to be an ID check, I bought a lock at the local store as my last lock I took with my bag fell behind the gap between my dormitory heater and the wall. Unable to fish it out, I had to leave it. The lock wasn’t expensive, and looked pretty heavy duty. The airport check in was very easy. The line was very small, less than 1 minute waiting, and then I was shown to an automated check in service, which the young lady showed me how to use.  In basic, you type your flight number into the machine, have it scan your passport, and it spits out boarding passes. If you have no check in luggage, you can go directly to immigration. If you do have check in luggage, you go to the counter, show them your pass, and they will send your baggage all the way to the other destination. Another good thing about this system was I got the boarding pass for Narita and Singapore Airport, meaning I didn’t need to line up for a pass there. The only thing missing was the gate number at Singapore which I am guessing hasn’t been decided. With check in totally painless, I expect problems down the road, but entering immigration was easy, and except for the fact I had to go to a special section as I had to get my Alien Registration card voided by filling in a simple form and having a hole punched into my card, it was pretty standard.

Once at the departure terminal, I was told I would need to take a shuttle to the gates as they were in a different area. The shuttle would only take 5 minutes, but it was still surprising to hear. With time to burn as I was like 1 hour early, I went to the Internet Cafe run by NTT Docomo, connected to the WiFi and used a laptop to start this post.

With only 2 hours in Singapore, I may update the post there, but as I will be arriving very late back in Perth (1 am landing time, plus customs and taxi ride will mean 2-3 am home time), I doubt I will finish this post today. I think after this post, I will write a final post, before this blog comes to an end, as my exchange experience comes to a close.

Updated at Singapore

After it was time to board the aircraft, I left the free Internet place and went to the boarding gate without issue. There, I was greeted with a rather large line that very quickly disappeared  As boarding was limited to business class passengers and passengers Row 50 and over, I had to wait, but after the wait was over, I board the plane and placed my stuff in the overhead compartment without issue. Sitting down, the person next to me was nice enough to start a conversation. From the United States of America, his grandfather was in the US Air Force (Army Air Corp at the time), and served in 3 wars. He was a fan of Science fiction and rather a delight to talk to. After a short talk about his plans for Singapore (he was going to visit a friend for a few days before he would go home for his study to become a doctor of cancer), the plane started to taxi and then did take off. We talked for a few minutes after that, but when the entertainment system came on, we watched our television screens. I watched Just for Gags, Rise of the Guardians, Looper and a Japanese movie I wasn’t able to finish before the flight ended. Very happy with my movies, I completely failed to sleep on the flight, leaving me with being at Singapore totally awake.

When we landed in Singapore, I grabbed my bag and said my goodbyes, before I left for the transfer desk where I found which gate I was ate, and got myself an Aisle seat, making it easier for me to get out if I needed to. When I was done, I went to the free Internet area, and began charging my laptop and other devices before the long flight to Perth.

My flight from Tokyo to Singapore was 7 hours, and my estimated time in the air to Perth from Singapore will be 5, so in total I will be 12 hours in the air, but more then 15 hours around aircraft and airports. Since I will most likely be arriving at my house at 2 am in the morning, I suspect I will want to sleep very fast.

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