Day One and Two:
While I love traveling to new places, the journey there can be a bit tedious. I set off from Cleveland for Chicago at the lovely hour of 4:30am to be treated to a 6 hour layover. To make the morning even better, I ended up with a tension headache. Because being cramped in the plane isn’t fun enough, my body decided to add pain and nausea into the mix. Feeling less than stellar I made the decision to buy a day pass to the United Club in search of some peace and quiet. I found a deserted corner and attempted to take a nap. Sleep never came, so I took full advantage of the free breakfast and latte machine. Worried about the next flight, I decided to pay for an overpriced chair massage. It felt wonderful!
Finally came the time to head to the gate for the dreaded flight to Japan. I met up with Mady, Jack, Jake and Barbara and we boarded the plane. Armed with an eye mask, neck pillow, and a bottle of melatonin, I desperately tried to get some sleep. It never came. To pass the time I watched Aquaman, Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald, and The House with a Clock in it’s Walls. I also read a guide book for Thailand. Dinner was the usual questionable airplane food. I had the chicken and rice. The last few hours of the flight were the worst. I got so antsy and wanted nothing more than to move around.
After landing, we made our way to the gate for the next leg of the journey. The flight from Tokyo to Bangkok is 6 hours. Again, I ended up having a movie marathon. I watched On the Basis of Sex, Ocean’s 8, and The Greatest Showman. I did start to nod off a bit halfway through the flight, but I was never able to fall asleep. For dinner I chose the chicken and rice. The rice was quite good, but I ended up skipping the chicken. The sides included potato salad with shrimp, a cabbage salad, a sushi roll with edamame beans, a dinner roll, and crackers with cheese. It was quite the spread for an economy meal! A bit later we were given Häagen-Dazs for dessert!
We landed in Bangkok around 10pm. Immediately after exiting the plane we were greeted with the humidity and heat; a taste of the weather to expect over the next two weeks. We then made our way through customs and immigration. Heading down to the lower level we went in search of a taxi that could hold all five of us and our luggage. We managed to squeeze into the van with Jake up front and Jack in the trunk with the bags. There was a slight struggle with the language barrier when we told the driver where we wanted to go, but after a call to the hotel he knew where to go and we were off. It took just over 30 minutes to get to the New Siam Riverside hotel. We checked into our rooms and headed up for the night. After a shower, I tucked in for a wonderful nights sleep.