Friday, April 6, 2012

Wild Windy Weather

I was experiencing a wonderfully relaxing plane ride home from the States on Tuesday - 10 hours of no fussing, no wiggling, no chattering and best of all, my own touch screen TV with unlimited supply of movies, TV shows, even audio books!  There was no one in the seat next to me and a completely non-chatty lady in the aisle seat.  Who could ask for more?

Gig Harbor from the air (lower right)

Then as we're getting ready for the descent, the pilot came over the speaker and mention some "high winds" in Tokyo so could the flight attendants please get in their jump seats and stay there until landing?  And then to add to that, the flight attendant came over the speaker and remind us that in an event of an emergency landing, please leave all your belongings behind.  Hmmm, is there something we should know?

I won't lie, it was a wild ride down, but the pilots must have been more than capable because we made it in one piece!  It wasn't until I cleared customs and immigration that I realized how bad the weather was - every single flight was cancelled!  Turns out there were record (non-typhoon) winds in Tokyo peaking during the hours of 3 and 9 - I landed at 3:00!

Cancelled, cancelled, cancelled

As I stood in a very long line to re-book my flight, I called Stevie to break the news.  He, however, was on top of it as he was checking the status of my flight.  So I asked him to please find me a hotel room - thoughts of sleeping on the floor of the airport were not appealing.  He managed to score me a room in some hotel, so with my flight re-booked for 24 hours later, I headed out to get some rest.

Stevie had said he grabbed the first listing on Travelocity and wasn't sure about the hotel, but as the shuttle bus progressively stopped at hotel after hotel and I was the lone remainder on the bus, I was beginning to worry.  And then the bus turned down some residential roads and farm roads and then I began to worry some more.  And then I saw this place coming up and I worried even more...

Alas, my hotel was not the Hotel Chapel Christmas, but the one across the street, which was just fine!  It did not take me long to settle in and put the day to rest.

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