vintage_belle: (Default)
I am such a social faux pas. D:

Tomorrow Stevie and I are going to Kyoto, since she hasn't been and it's better than staring at the walls of my apartment. We will return on the 5th, just in time for me to drag her to "training" on the 6th. Then I have to leave her alone for two days worth of work since school starts on the 7th. D: We'll have the weekend (and this is where I'm a social faux pas) and then I leave her alone for another two days before she returns to America on the 12th. (And that's going to be fun - a lovely 5:30 wake up for all. 8Db)
vintage_belle: (Default)
Well this is a late report, but.

22nd, left work early (after having spoken with Kyoto-sensei on Monday), ran for my apartment, grabbed my stuff, ran for the 14:00 bus to get to the station at 14:20, got my tickets, got on the 14:43. Got to Takasaki in time for the 15:13 Shinkansen to Tokyo. Got to Tokyo at about 16:15, which gave me enough time to catch the 16:33 express to Narita, which got me to the airport at 17:30.

Luckily nobody travels at 17:30 on a Tuesday night and I had done online check-in. All I had to do was print the ticket and head on through security and immigration, scarf down dinner, and wait around a bit to board. The plane took off pretty much on time and because of tail winds instead of landing in Hawaii at 7:30, we landed closer to 6:30. Good stuff.

I got the shuttle to the hotel (round-trip ticket so I didn't have to worry about getting back), and arrived about 8. Mom met me in front. We immediately went shopping at the Ala Malona shopping center - basically to celebrate Chanukah without the religious trappings. Neither of us have lighted the candles this year, in part for mourning and in part (in my case) because I don't have a menorah in which to light them. Haul: two shirts, a pair of jeans, three pairs of shoes, and a new watch (every last item was on sale). We returned and went to the beach to watch the sunset. Dinner was at a Thai place one of mom's friends had recommended.

Wednesday we woke up late (about 9:00). We got a late breakfast, and by the time we were out it was nearly 12. We decided to see America's only palace (the Iolani Palace), and we had one hell of a wait for the bus. It was a fairly long ride into Honolulu to get to the palace, but well worth the visit. After the sugar plantation owners overthrew the Queen and ignored President Cleavland's order to reinstate her, the Americans promptly auctioned every single piece of luxury in the building. The organization that now runs the tours is still trying to get it all back. The building is beautiful, quite small as palaces go, and I hope they're having success.

Thursday we went on a circle tour of the island, guided by a driver who literally did not once stop talking. Even when we were all getting off the bus, he was talking. When we got onto the bus, he was talking. Every minute the bus was moving, he was talking. We saw many beautiful lookouts, and a pod of about four humpback whales swimming by one of the beaches. We also went to the Dole plantation (which is moving to Maui because they can't keep up with their expenses.)

Today has been a very lazy day of walking, lunch, sitting by the poolside, and now heading down to see my last Hawaiian sunset. Tomorrow I leave around 12:00 for Japan again.

Quite a trip, no? :D
vintage_belle: (Gackt)
I have created an album of my Athens pictures. It's here, if you care to see it. It's only 41 of 100-something pictures, but I think it gives a nice idea of what there is to see in Athens.
vintage_belle: (Arashi - Jun is happy)
I have returned, spending nearly the entire day flying. 5:15 wake up - not so awesome. Olympic airlines is also not so great an airline; very bad service. It didn't help that for nearly all of the time before take off and after landing the two morons in front of us were chattering as loudly as they could be - I could hear every single word of their conversation and it was not intellectually stimulating. Twenty minutes spent trying to figure out how their tickets were labeled A and C and yet they were sitting together (easy answer - there isn't a B seat, the little sign overhead said so). There were other inane topics, but I've forgotten them for the most part.

With the bad stuff out of the way: It was an amazing trip. Athens is amazing for having all of the antiquity that it does. The waters surrounding the islands are a beautiful and gorgeous blue, and so delightful to swim in. Dana and I spent nearly every night walking through the Old City (built up over a million years, it seems, there is Byzantine all the way up through Ottoman influence) and having our dinner at various establishments throughout. The scenery was beautiful, the skies were clear, the sun was brilliant (and intent to burn, but the olive oil sunscreen we bought worked amazingly well). It was also fantastic to spend so much time with Dana after the one or two lunches here and there that we'd had to cobble together during college. I would do it again in a heartbeat - I really want to see the other islands now.
vintage_belle: (Default)
Pupe, why you gotta be having downtime when I'm on vacation and only have the now hours to check you? You make me sad on the every side.

Anyway.

Have been to Symi now - it's basically your lovely Greek harbor town, where all the houses are built into the hills on top of each other and everything is yellow and beige and white and pink. There are a billion and five restaurants along the water, and several of them have little docks and areas where one can go swimming while you wait for your drinks. (The one Dana and I chose was not worth the 14 euros we had to spend, but the swimming was fantastic.)

Tomorrow is going to be another nothing day. There's an aquarium by our hotel so we might go there. Otherwise we're going to perhaps take a tour of the Rhodes beaches by boat on Thursday, and we'll take a day trip out to Turkey on Friday.

Saturday we're due to be back in New York. The thought is saddening. T^T
vintage_belle: (Arashi - Nino sees you)
After two days of relentless sightseeing in Athens (Acropolis, theatre of Dionysos, Hadrian's Library, Temple of Olympian Zeus, Hadrian's Gate, Roman Market, and Ancient Agora) Dana and I are safely in Rhodes. Today we flew, landed in Rhodes, got to our hotel, went to the Old City, had dinner, and are now in a cafe for free internet and crepes. Tomorrow we will do nothing and it will be wonderful.
vintage_belle: (Arashi - Sho golden)
Yesterday my mother and I went up to the Cloisters. I hadn't ever been before then - there was no time or no one to go with me. The building was constructed specifically to hold Medieval art from the Metropolitan Museum of Art collection. There is somehow incredibly much more meaning infused in said art when it is displayed in appropriate surroundings, rather than on the wall of a tourist-filled hall. (This probably had something to do with the fact that we traveled up there quite early in the morning, so fewer people were out, but still.) The unicorn tapestries are absolutely stunning. We brought my mother's camera and took many pictures, of course.

Anyhow! Off and away am I!

First to the Long Island Railroad, which will bear us to the John F. Kennedy International Airport (terminal 1). And at 16:30 the plane will (belatedly) take off and fly me to Greece! Thankfully it's only an 8 hour or so flight. Dana and I should touch down sometime ridiculously early in the morning in Athens, whereupon we will take our things to the hotel for early check in. Currently the plan is to just get up and go, and keep going until we drop at a decent hour of the night. Circumstances may force a change depending on how exhausted we are. But we have two days for Athens, and six in Rhodes, which gives us plenty of time for a day trip into Turkey (a two hour boat ride is simply part of the charm) and several out to the other islands.

I am shivering with excitement!
vintage_belle: (Cate - royalty)
Very often these days I wonder what I have going for myself, and very often I can't come up with much. But that is neither here nor there.

The point is, today a large bee flew into my room and landed on my radiator cover. MOST UNPLEASANT. I certainly did not shriek and calmly remove myself from the room, not at all. Rather, I whimpered pathetically and fled to the bathroom. The thing is dead now - I think it was dying when it flew in - and the body has been disposed of and now I can breathe again.

I had my teeth cleaned this morning, but in light of the bee I went downstairs and treated myself to a large milkshake. Ugh. Bees.

Let's see, what else is there?

I saw Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince with my friend yesterday. For such a long movie, surprisingly little happened in it. I think in part there was a lot of issue with pacing - when a scene would end and another start, I nearly always wasn't paying attention to it because I was busy wondering "Wait, did that scene just end? But when?" Thus when something important happened, it didn't seem terribly important.

And... I'm leaving for Greece in two days and have yet to pack for it. I should probably get on that.
vintage_belle: (Geisha - umbrella)
Yay, it is traveling time~!

I have packed quite light, and I'm hopeful, and reasonably sure, that my suitcase is carry-on size. If it is, I'm looking forward to avoiding the customs-recheck-your-bags circus. If it's not, that sucks, because my laptop will be in there and I don't think it will fit into my carry-on bag. orz

Now I'm just hanging around and waiting for 12 to come so I can catch the bus and head out.
vintage_belle: (Arashi - Ohno hat)
So, I can FINALLY has ticket home.

It only took two Skype calls and a wait of three hours in between them to get it done, too. *rolls eyes* Apparently my e-mail with my credit card details reached them on a Sunday, and they're closed. But here's the thing: Even if my e-mail reached their office on a Sunday when they're closed, they're open Monday and I didn't get a reply from them regarding it until this morning - which means they sent that Tuesday night. So, uh, days aren't much matching up there. Like at all. *sigh*

But.

My flight is not the 15th, but the 16th - which is a Saturday. Despite this, I told my boss (who came by today to get a copy of my toryokusho and passport for my re-entry permit) that my flight is Friday. I'm taking Friday as a mental health day and using it to "pack" (I in fact don't need to pack as I still have half a wardrobe back home) and get my apartment cleaned so I don't come back to swarms of bugs in a week. Also, I'm tentatively going to be gone until the 22nd. I haven't bought a ticket back from New York yet, but the 22nd is my official 'return' day.
vintage_belle: (Nanba - small and sheepish)
My hair is shiny and red again! Now I need to get a nice trim.

In a feat of amazing cunning, I have somehow managed to pack my two bags under the weight limit of 50lbs (according to our bathroom scale, at least). One is believed to be slightly under 40lbs, and the other one is just at 40lbs. We will see if this is right tomorrow at 10 when I check in for my flight.

Now all that is left is to pack up my carry on - which is an old school back pack of mine 8D - and hope that they let me carry my laptop on as a 'hand bag'. Most of this carry on will consist of electronics - chargers as well as the items they charge. The last bit of room will be saved for my lonely book (Mistborn, which I am half way through) and my coffee cup I bought in Kyoto two years ago.

The very first thing I will doubtlessly wind up doing when I reach Narita? Buy a purse and wallet at the duty free, for I will have neither. Special fun times.
vintage_belle: (Christmas Ornament)
Scenario: The plane you are on is landing. The stewardess makes her landing announcements and asks you put your trays up, turn off your electronics, and put your seats in the upright position. What do you do?

A) Do as she asks.
B) Do mostly everything but try to eke out a few more moments with your iPod.
C) Kneel on your still-reclined seat, belt unbuckled, laptop sitting on tray and still playing a movie, and talk to the person behind you.

The answer according to the two girls sitting next to me, was C. Apparently they needed personally engraved invitations - the stewardess had to come three times to get them to put their seats upright while we were taking off, as well. I wanted to choke them.

However, with that tale told, I have returned in triumph to New York. My flights were on time and my bags came with them.

My iPod has been repaired. I have Saku Sho again T^Tb

I'm working on all those Christmas cards now. I had to wait for today to get my calligraphy pens. Hopefully I'll send them all out tomorrow.

The Messiah sing-in is next week. I'm excited for it.
vintage_belle: (Nathan Fillion)
I'm writing this entry. There's something wrong with it. Can you guess?

a) I'm being cryptic
b) I shouldn't be writing it
c) It's covered in jam

If you guessed 'c', there's probably something wrong with you. If you guessed 'a' you get points, but you're wrong. The answer is 'b': I shouldn't be writing it. By all rights I should still be in the air on my way to Nagoya, Japan. I'm not. Instead I'm in Seattle, Washington, due to Broken Plane Syndrome. To say the least, it was a bit unnerving being two hours over the ocean and suddenly being turned around to make a 'cautious' landing. So despite being awake at 3:30 to get to the airport by 4:00 to make a 6:30 flight, I won't actually leave the country until 10:00 tomorrow morning. What a day.

[edit] 4 in a row, bitches! And Kay, get off Baby's back about that play. It was at least a 95mph knuckleball for fuck's sake. You try making that catch.
vintage_belle: (Alexis Vinas)
On the off that anyone's interested, I've finally gotten around to putting my pictures from Barcelona up. They're here, some with commentary, I think. Then again, the commentary might only be on my facebook account. They're not particularly artistic, either, just some snaps to remember a holiday by - which I'm vaguely ashamed of, as Barcelona screams to have artistic photos taken. Oh dear.
vintage_belle: (Anna Paquin - cuddly)
And so I return from Barcelona, where lunch is generally had at 14:00 and dinner is any time after 20:00 and the hot chocolate is more like hot chocolate pudding than anything else. The weather was bright, sunny, and warm, and my parents were paying for everything and I really want to be there right now. And I'm exhausted, so I'll ramble more coherently tomorrow.
vintage_belle: (Anna Paquin - cuddly)
My ceiling appears to have developed a leak in the last three days, due to the amount of rain. My transition to a true Bohemia is nearly complete. It matters little, however, as tomorrow I'll be off to meet my parents in Barcelona. They've promised to do something about the leak as soon as it gets a bit dryer. Anyway. Barcelona. I'll be meeting my parents there tomorrow morning, and I'll not be taking my laptop with me. I'm sure we'll find an internet cafe somewhere, so chances of me updating are high, but if you don't hear from me until the 18th, that's why.

Hope everyone's well!
vintage_belle: (CATS - Mistoffelees)
I find myself sitting here at the computer terminal with an extra twenty minutes of time thanks to a fifty pence piece that Dana decided to gift me with. (Read: Thought she was using it on herself, but missed the right slot for her computer.) So I thought I'd give another quick update on absolutely nothing, because neither of us have anything better to do. So far the plan is to attempt to stay awake all night, in an attempt to be awake tomorrow morning rather than risk sleeping until four again. Given that the travel from Cardiff to Glasgow is about five hours, there should be more than enough time to sleep on the train.

Cardiff during the day is rather boring, as I've said, but the night-life is pretty impressive. Walking down the main street yielded a bar or club every other door with music pouring out into the streets. It makes an for an interesting mix of songs like My Humps fading into songs like Uptown Girl as you walk.

There's a nice sort of TV-room in the hostel, where Dana and I watched about three-fourths of Dirty Dancing before hunger hit. Unfortunately once the clubs open all the restaurants seem to close. We wound up at McDonald's. Never would say this normally, but thank God for it.
vintage_belle: (Default)
Wanna hear something sick? After going to sleep at approximately 11 or 12 on December 28, I awoke the next day. At four PM. On December 29. God, now it's going to be even harder time getting a normal sleeping schedule going. I haven't slept that long since I was getting over jet lag from China. I suppose in some ways it's for the good of my trip. Cardiff is just the littlest bit boring, being dotted with shopping arcades but not much else. There is the Cardiff Castle, but it closed at four, so of course we missed it. We'll have to go tomorrow.

Also, the keyboards at the hostel are god-awful to type on. And we had the scariest time at a Subway I will ever have, with a woman behind the register who was more like the Soup Nazi than anything else.
vintage_belle: (Kana - sleep softly)
I write to you from merry olde England. This will be a brief update, as I fear for my coherency level. Dana and I left at approximately 7:00 - naturally about twenty minutes late. We touched down at Heathrow at 6:10 in the morning, and finally got out of the airport (after customs and all) at around 7:50-8:00. We took the only cab we will take to the school so I could drop off my huge fuck-off suitcase of stuff and laptop. Then we took the Circle Line to Paddington station and then got on the train to Cardiff. I'm typing from our youth hostel. I also technically haven't slept since 10:00 yesterday morning. The worst part is that it's only two in the afternoon. I'm afraid to sleep now because I don't want to get jet lag. Bah.

Cardiff is a nice city, but small. It is full of shopping arcades, but neither Dana nor I are interested in shopping at the moment. The stores can all be found in America, anyway.

[livejournal.com profile] deviliknow, your challenge 'fic is progressing nicely. It's at about four pages now.

And now I die at the computer station.

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