Let me start off by saying the cover photo for this is the cell phone strap my student gave me that I mentioned last post. I found it fitting since I’m going to mention Australia in this entry, and she visited Australia last year because she was one of two second-year students to win the town’s English speech contest.
Okay, so as I type this, my heart is calming down from purchasing my official ticket to Australia! I ran the flight times by my friend and her family, and they gave the OK. I also double-checked the transfer times within Haneda airport from domestic to international, and they say to allow a total of 60-70 minutes. (So there’s another convenient little travel tip for anyone going that route. International to domestic within Haneda is 70-80 minutes, by the way.)
For those who aren’t caught up, I was slightly hasty in purchasing my previous ticket to Australia (literally two seconds before my friend gave the “wait” chat message), and I ended up not booking enough time to transfer within Sydney. (See the previous post for info on that.) I thought I could cancel it online for free, but I had chosen a slightly cheaper return ticket which had a cancellation fee of about ￥20,000 (~$180-200 USD at time of writing). Mostly I was freaking out that I’d made this embarrassing mistake, but the money wasn’t anything to scoff at, either.
Anyway, in the end I had to call the airline office in Tokyo and cancel it. My layovers coming back are longer (7 then 5 hours, respectively), and I have to leave my apartment for the airport at about 4 or 4:30 in the morning to go to my local airport, but I’ll deal. My basic flight is:
- Local airport -> Tokyo, Haneda (HND) -> Singapore -> Brisbane
The return trip is the same. I’m just glad I don’t have to deal with transferring from Tokyo, Haneda to Tokyo, Narita airports. That takes about an hour to an hour and a half via bus. Plus, my friend adores the Singapore airport, so I look forward to the wonders it has in store. Now to stress about taxes, mailing things home, and planning for Korea in the process.
On to the “dreams” portion of my blog title. While at work today – the only school I get internet at without having to hot spot it! – I read a bunch of BBC News articles. One was about the Svaneti region of the Caucasus Mountains, and it made me want to travel, so I wrote down a list of countries I want to visit, even if it’s only for a couple of days and a couple of sites. I won’t list them all here, but suffice to say that it’s a lot of European ones, a few Asian ones, a couple in Africa, and a scattered few in the Americas. I also don’t want to hit up major cities or tourist sites except maybe a day. I’d rather visit smaller areas or more natural locations. Tourist areas just don’t do it for me.
I know I won’t get to most of them, especially anytime soon (though I’ve half-seriously considered trying to travel, work, and write around the world), but they’re goals to reach for.
Okay. Guess I’ll wrap this post up here.