We left San Diego International Airport on Sunday June 21st on a Japan Airlines flight that left in the early afternoon. We were excited to fly for the first time as “Trusted Travelers” who could skip the TSA security lines…only to find that JAL doesn’t participate in the program. So, we joined the rest of civilization in a line that we didn’t care about because we were on our way to Thailand where they don’t let you read work email, even if your life depended on it.
We confirmed the location of our gate on our way to the Stone Brewing Company, and not the other way around. We each ordered taster flights and broke out the new GoPro for its inaugural Thailand video.
We called our mothers to say goodbye, threw back the beers, and were on our way to board.
First impression of JAL: “Dorothy, we aren’t on Southwest anymore.” Clean and fancy seats for everyone, and windows that change color to a dark blue (according to your preference) in lieu of plane old shades. Vast international movie choices on your personal TV set. Pillows and blankets for everybody. Several in flight meals (you choose! There’s even a menu with pictures!) at no extra charge and, thanks to flying over international waters, free booze. The bathrooms were the best part – a basket of free toothbrushes, hands free water faucets, and space for days.
However…we were still on an outbound flight from the US and therefore the experience wasn’t completely devoid of rude Americans…like the one sitting between me and the aisle. Not even her personal supply of tortilla chips or travel sized coffee mate hazelnut creamer could keep her from rolling her eyes at me (they almost fell out of her face!) the ONE, AN, SINGULAR, ONLY time on the ELEVEN hour flight that I asked to be let out for a bathroom break. Bless her and her tortilla chips.
After about 6 movies and a 20 collective minutes of sleep between us, we landed at Tokyo Narita International Airport.
After a quick breeze through another security line we rolled over to our gate and hung out with a honeymooning couple who’d shared our flight from San Diego. Then we were off to Bangkok!
Our 6 hour flight to Bangkok felt like cake compared to the flight across the ocean. We watched a movie together – Eli, the consummate chick-flick connoisseur, chose “About Time” – got another 2 meals (dinner AND breakfast!) and even slept for a little longer. We finally landed and were greeted with a wall of heat and humidity, aka Southeast Asia.
We met the driver who would whisk us away to our home for the night and arrived at the Paragon Inn in Bangkok.
We had enough time for a shower and long nap before we were up again, back to Suvarnabhumi airport and off to our next adventure in Ko Samui!
We stayed at: The Paragon Inn Bangkok
We flew from San Diego to Bangkok on: Japan Airlines
We booked our travel through: Momondo