Friday February 12, 2016
We got home Friday and never posted this until the following day Saturday afternoon Feb 13, 2016.
On Thursday afternoon when we arrived in HK from KL we weren’t exhausted enough so we went to the magic kingdom of Hong Kong!
We left the Hong Kong Regal Airport hotel at 6 am and walked across the walkway into the airport. It’s an easy trek up the escalator or elevator and onto the departures concourse. When we looked for our flight it was not yet up on the digital board. Hmmm, too early!
After wandering around we found the ANA counter and finally the ANA flight on the digital board. The flight was scheduled for 10 am. FYI, ANA stands for All Nippon Airways which in Japan is a major carrier but still a carrier we had never previously heard of. Our flights for today were Hong Kong to Tokyo Narita to Calgary to Saskatoon.
When we checked in at ANA our bags got a blue luggage tag the read HOT. It was to identify our baggage as being on a super short layover. We worked our way through the immigration line to exit the country. The Hong Kong immigration no longer stamps your passport which is a bummer as we like the stamps! Instead they leave you with a little slip of paper that says you can stay in HK until a date (90 days after entering). Once though the passport control we headed through the scanners. Linda got her back pack searched for scissors! It’s usually Gary with the hazardous look alike items! After emptying her backpack they found tweezers that look like scissors. Another close call!
Since we had plenty of time after our Hong Kong check in and screening we went to our favourite restaurant the Deco Cafe.
We had a huge breakfast knowing that it might be the only good food for the day!
Always plan for the worst and hope for the best. Airline food in Asia has it down sides! The cost of breakfast was significant though. Coffee or tea was 52 HKD ($9.25 CAD) ouch and Gary’s breakfast was $125 HKD or $24 CAD. Linda’s was about the same. Sure breakfast is a good way to start your day off right even if it costs $75 CAD.
When we arrived in Japan the seat back tv screen has a channel that allows you to view the live camera out of the nose of the plane. We saw the complete landing and taxi to our gate. It was too cool. Gary recorded it with his iPhone. We had 1 hour and 10 minutes total time in Tokyo, but considering the plane loads 30 minutes before takeoff we barely had half an hour to get to our next gate. As it happens we deplaned at gate 231 which was on the tarmac a mile away from the terminal. We were loaded into a bus and taken for a 10 to 15 minute drive around the tarmac and through a tunnel under one of the terminal buildings to unload. We then had to go through another security scan again which took time. Gary had to empty his back pack because of his dive mask and a duck whistle that connects to the air system and has an air nozzle pipe fitting. He always takes this stuff in his back pack because it is irreplaceable and needs it to dive. Alas another security breach suspect. Definitely better safe than sorry!
After security we had to find gate 31 which was at the far end of the terminal. The people movers (a flat escalator type walkway) speed the process by double that of regular walking. Sadly some people stop and enjoy the view. Gary stands right behind them and mostly they step from the middle to one side like they are suppose to do so that people can pass. We went on 5 or 6 of these people movers walking as fast as traffic would allow! We managed to get to the gate and used the wash rooms before boarding. Gary stood in line to buy drinks and by the time he paid for them we were standing in line to board. Luckily we were in Zone 5, row 20, which was near the front section of the plane.
Our flight to Calgary was on Air Canada flight AC10. It was nice to be on a Canadian carrier again. Despite what people say about our national carrier they are tops in our books. Wider seats and more leg room (but Cathay Pacific has the most room) and usually very nice people on AC international staff. We had a good flight but as usual in Asia the food was not great. Considering that the flight originated in Japan it means the catering was Japanese as well. Our flight of 9 plus hours went fast as we both took sleeping pills to catch a bit of shut eye. The baby next to us was screaming and even with ear plugs and Zorro style eye masks we needed some pharmaceutical intervention to make sleeping possible.
When we landed in Calgary we collected our bags, cleared customs and then transferred our bags back to the luggage conveyors and went to find our departure gate to Saskatoon. Along the way we bought lunch to go at Chilli’s. Next thing we were boarding our one hour flight to Saskatoon. When we arrived in Saskatoon our baggage showed up on the carousel, thankfully. Gary’s Mom picked us up and took us to her place where our car was parked underground! Yes, a clean car!
We made a quick stop for groceries and then went to visit Denae in St Pauls hospital. On our trip home Gary could hardly keep his eyes open. We were home before supper time but extremely tired!
Thankfully we made it safely home! In the four weeks we were gone we flew over 28,581 Km on 12 different flights, with 6 different carriers. That doesn’t include all the km’s covered in 4 ferry trips, numerous shuttles, taxis, tuk-tuks and our own two feet! We had a great time and made lots of memories. It’s great to be home in our own bed again, with our own RO drinking water and our own washroom facilities with a facecloth! It seems hard to believe that just over 28 hours ago we were in Hong Kong and are now home! It’s time for bed to try and shake the jet lag! As we go to bed at 10 pm our body is saying “what’s for lunch”? OMG!