In honor of flying Japan Airlines to Tokyo, I’ve written a short Haiku (apologies to Basho and the Beatles)
Jumped out of bed
Early morning foggy head
Lili’s smile brings clarity
We’ve discovered what might possibly be the world’s greatest airline – JAL. They are simply amazing. The staff goes out of their way to be helpful, the food is phenomenal, the sake is exquisite and the seats are more comfortable (and more complex) than a craftmatic adjustable bed. The gate agent in Chicago actually found out where our Luggage was and notified the staff in the Swiss Air lounge to tell us our luggage made the connection. Because of the tremendous courtesy shown to us, we feel compelled to reflect it back. I now have a new standard and role model for courtesty and politeness which I need for those of you who know me.
Given how much I travel I do for work, I’ve forgotten just how magical travel can be. We are flying on a 747 – in business class. As we taxied on the runway for takeoff, the video on the plane showed us what the pilots were seeing. Out of our window we could watch the wings. The wings on a 747 are designed to flex as speed increases. Fully loaded, standing still the wings actually bend down once the plane starts taking off the wings slowly lift until they are actually bending upwards. Between the viewing the takeoff from the pilot’s point of view and looking out the side window watching the wings I was like a 6-year-old at Christmas.
The food is simply amazing. JAL does offer a western food option but why would you choose it. The first meal was so beautiful to look at, I actually made Catherine get the camera down from the overhead bin in order to take a picture. The taste lived up to the beauty. I can now list JAL as one of my favorite Japanese restaurants.
In addition to a great meal I got to taste four different types of Sake: Shochu Gokoo; Shochu Jinkoo; Tenryou; Hakurakusei. Of the four, my favorite was the Tenyou. Here’s the description from the menu “from a distilling tradition that has continued for 350 years in the beautiful mountainous region of Gifu, it presents an elegant aroma and mellow taste that harmonizes with a variety of dishes.
Yeah, my description of it is that it was simply tasty. I had two bottles.
Our flight left Chicago at 11:10 am on the 24th and we arrive at 3:05 pm on the 25th. The flight between
Chicago and Toyko flies a Rhumb line northwest from Chicago flying over Alaska and the Bering sea before heading southwest to Japan. The mountains and glaciers from the air in the late afternoon soon were so beautiful. I actually got the big camera out for a few photos but those will have to wait for another day before they are downloaded. I think we end up spending about 15 hours or so in the air but whos counting. I’ve never seen Catherine so relaxed on a plane. I somehow imagine our flight back will be less relaxing.
After short nap, I spent some time watching a very interesting Japanese movie “Riding the Metro” well worth viewing and Netflix should have it, it was of course time for yet another meal.
Another beautifully presented meal and the Japanese rice porridge was – wait for it…. tasty. I’m afraid tasty will probably be my description of choice for this trip. Well, I have homework to do so I’ll close out this entry. -t
A + 1 day; L – 4 days;