Sunday, April 22, 2012

Tokyo, Day 11 – Returning Home

We woke up at 6:15 am (well, my dad. I tried but it got a little later). We took a shower, got dressed and packed the last remaining things like our toiletries. We left a (pre-made) note for the cleaners in which we thanked them for their service. My dad also wrote that if we return to Tokyo, we might stay in this hotel again. ^^
We took our suitcases downstairs and my dad checked out.

Hotel Lobby
Bye bye hotel lobby!

We walked outside, where a few other people were waiting. The bus arrived in a few minutes and an employee put our suitcases into the luggage space. Our bus was a big orange ‘Friendly Airport Limousine’ bus. I had seen many driving around Tokyo.

Friendly Airport Limousine
I’m glad the bus was friendly. XD

We got in and sat down on the right (I had the window of course). The bus departed at 7:00 am. It’s funny, it drove by another hotel and then made a big turn, so we passed the big orange clock again. My dad took a picture for the last time.

Bye Bye Big Clock
Hope to see you one day again, big clock!

I must say that just sitting down in the bus and looking out the window was really nice and also fun! Driving on the roads really showed us a different side of Tokyo that we hadn’t seen before! The bus drove really fast over high roads and through tunnels. It was really cool! We also passed Odaiba, the Disney Resort and an IKEA (I had seriously wondered before if they had any IKEAs in Japan too. Question answered). While our luggage was in the luggage space, we kept our hand luggage close to us. I was really afraid to lose something.

The Girl and the Bag
Me and my Dream Star Bag.

After some time (I think we drove about 45 minutes) we arrived at Narita Airport. The driver had told the passengers to pay attention to what hall they needed to get off the bus. We had to get off at the first one. When we stopped, an emplyee quickly pulled out our luggage from the bus and they drove away again within 15 seconds. They were so fast! We were like: ‘Ok…. Bye…’ XD
We took our luggage and walked into the hall, where we checked in and confirmed our seats. While we were in line, a woman a few meters away from us was having some kind of panick attack! It was so bad she actually started to throw up and she had to be calmed down by a few female staffmembers. They drove her away in a wheelchair! I still wondered what had happened. Maybe she lost something? Her passport? Maybe even a family member? I don’t know…
After checking in, we went through security and then entered the airport. We walked around for a bit towards a bit of a central place, where the trains left that drove to our terminal. Since we had plenty of time, we bought a bottle of water, sat down on a bench and ate our bread and rolls that we had bought the day before at Hokuo.

Breakfast on the Airport
You can see my dad is tired, awww… And look, our separate Laox bag.

From the place where we sat we could look down on the departing station and we could look at a clock with different clocks in different timezones. We could also see some shops, like Tiffany&Co and a shop called ‘Akihabara’. We decided to browse there a little, maybe for magazines, before we went downstairs to the trains.
The story I’m about to tell is one of those ‘Pics or it didn’t happen’-kinds. I’m afraid I don’t have any pictures, so you’ll have to believe me on my word. ^^
We went into the Akihabara store and looked around a little, when suddenly we both heard a female voice that sounded pretty familiar. We looked behind us and we saw…
We just couldn’t believe it! We looked at each other and my dad whispered: ‘Is that… Judi Dench!?’
I looked again and now I was sure, it was Dame Judi Dench, the famous actress! While my dad kept on browsing, I walked after her. I just really wanted to talk to her for a moment. After I finally gained enough courage, I approached her and the conversation was almost exactly like this:
Me: ‘Excuse me, I feel ridiculous for asking, but… aren’t you Judi Dench?’ (I would have felt so stupid if she turned out to be someone else. XD)
Miss Dench (smiling): ‘Yes’.
Me: ‘Yes, you are..! Are you here on a holiday?’
Miss Dench: ‘No, I was here to receive a price.’
Me: ‘Oh wow, congratulations!’
Miss Dench: ‘Thank you. So are you here on holiday?’
Me: ‘Yes, my father and I spent an amazing week here.’
Miss Dench: ‘And now you’re returning to..?’
Me: ‘The Netherlands.’
Miss Dench: ‘Ah, the Netherlands. Well, have a safe flight.’
Me: ‘Thank you, you too!’
Oh my God, I’ve had an actual conversation with a famous person! I still can’t believe it, haha. And I’m afraid you’ll have to believe me on my word. I didn’t want to ask for any pictures. I was too scared to anyway, but I also didn’t want to bother her too much. The poor woman is just walking around on an airport! (P.s.: Wow, this is the first time I’ve actually mentioned the country I come from. XD)

Akihabara, you never know who you’ll encounter here…

After browsing the store we went down the escalators and went to stand in front of the doors for the train. They soon opened and we could step right in.

The trains were so funny and futuristic!

We arrived at Terminal 1 and proceeded to our gate. We had to wait for a while, since our plane would depart at 11:05 am and it was still quite early. Did I mention we didn’t have a straight flight back? We would first fly to Paris and then from there to Amsterdam.
We decided to buy some snacks and I noticed a shop that sold some special flavoured Kitkats! I had wanted to try those but hadn’t seen them in Tokyo, so we bought the flavours strawberry (pink bars), green tea and sakura or something (green bars) and I think pistachio (also green bars). We also bought some fruit Mentos and some Honey & Lemon candy. We returned to our gate and walked a bit around in circles. We took pictures of a plane we thought was ours, until we realised it was too small. XD Turned out our plane was to the left.

Paris, 11:05
So many flights!

Finally, it was time to board! There weren’t that many people and we could calmly enter the plane.
We had a window and a middle seat. Of course, I asked for the window seat (hehe). The man sitting next to my dad left after a little while, leaving us with three seats instead of one (he did steal my dad’s blanket though). The rest of the flight, he didn’t return, which was sooo nice! Having three chairs gives so much more space! We put our luggage above our heads (although I kept my Dream Star Bag close to me, I was terrified someone would smack his bag on top of it).
After a while, our plane started moving and not very much later it started to drive rapidly and then took off. Bye bye, Japan~!

Bye bye beautiful country! Sayonara, Nihon!

The flight was quite comfortable. Although we didn’t fly through the night this time, in the middle of the flight the staff closed the windows to give people the chance to sleep. Of course, I couldn’t. -_-”  My dad did though, a little. He was so tired.
Instead of sleeping, I watched two movies! The first one being Kung Fu Panda 2 and the second one Paradise Kiss, a movie based on the manga by Ai Yazawa. I really liked it! My dad also watched movies. He watched a movie from our country and the Japanese movie Bunny Drop. He really enjoyed it and wanted to make sure he remembered it, so I took a picture of the programmbook at the end of the flight.

View from a
The view was absolutely beautiful this time! Often there were no clouds.

The food was also nice again! We could choose between two menus: Western or Japanese. My dad chose Western, I chose Japanese (because I hadn’t had enough of course). I can’t help it, I just must show you a picture of what I got.

I know it doesn’t look fantastic, but it was really nice!

Do you see that milky round thing with black spots on and it on the left? It looked so disgusting! It felt really soft and snot-like, but I did try it after all and it tasted really nice! It had some kind of red paste in it, really yummy!
After a couple of hours, we received some snacks (I had mini muffins, chocolate and vanilla) and something to drink. Later we got breakfast, which was also really nice.
After a long flight, we landed on airport Charles de Gaulle, not very from from Paris.

Landing in
Back in Europe! I was disappointed I didn’t even see the Eiffeltower! (XD)

We got off the airplane and got checked. We had a bottle of water, but the guards told us we had to either throw it away or drink it all up! So my dad quickly drank everything and we could walk on, where we found a drinks vending machine after a couple of meters. I know it’s the rules, but still…
Our plane wouldn’t leave in couple of hours, but there were lots of things to see. The airport has quite a nice architecture.

Charles de Gaulle
The light through the roof looked just wonderful!

And there was also… a Ladurée shop! Of course, we just had to buy some macarons. My dad sat down, gave me money and said: ‘Just go buy something there!’ Of course, I didn’t hesitate for a moment!

I loved how the small, open shop still had that Ladurée atmosphere to it!

I bought a small tube with six different macarons in it and (I believe) two big ones. God, macarons are just sooo delicious. No lie!

Posing with my delicious treat.

We sat down for a while close to our gate and looked at the people. It was a really crowded hall, but with a great view on the landing and taking off airplanes.

I’ll tell you a little secret: we weren’t really sleeping here! (A)

Finally it was time to board the plane. It was a very small one with not too many seats, but it wasn’t so bad since it would only be an hour flying to our destination. We sat down (I still kept my Dream Star Bag close to me) and just relaxed. Or rather, we tried, for there were three Françaises (French women) sitting in front of us, talking and laughing so loudly it actually annoyed us. They didn’t even notice the flight attendants said all the chairs needed to be put in a straight up position. My dad actually had to make them notice. *sigh*
In the meantime it had become dark outside and the plane started moving. We took off and, as we later said jokingly, the flight attendants started to hand out snacks while the plane was not yet in a horizontal position! The flight was so short, there wouldn’t be time otherwise! I was looking out the window, to the pretty lights on the ground.

Europe by
The best picture I could get of nightly Europe. =)

After a while, I asked my dad: ‘Is that the harbor of Antwerpen (Belgium)?’ My dad looked and said: ‘No, I think it’s the harbor of Rotterdam’. I didn’t believe him, that would be so soon already! After which the pilot said we were flying over Rotterdam and we would soon arrive at our destination. My dad was right after all!
Finally, we landed and we were back in our own country! We walked through some deserted halls and finally arrived in the luggage delivery hall, but we couldn’t find our suitcases! Until we found out we had to be in the next hall.
As soon as we arrived in the hall we walked up to the windows that separate the hall from the airport hall where people who aren’t flying can walk around and see there family off/again. There, I saw my brother standing! He quickly went to get my mom and when I saw her, I couldn’t help but laugh. They had two giant floating bear balloons with them!

I was so happy to finally see my mom and brother back!

My mom had joked when we left that she would buy balloons for us when we got back. I didn’t expect her to actually do it!
Later she told us that, because of a mistake in the car navigation system, they had arrived really late at the airport. According to the screens, our plane had already landed and my mom still wanted to buy the balloons. After they bought them, they ran through the airport to catch us in time and the balloons constantly hit the ceiling and screens hanging from it. XD They were still really on time after all, luckily!
After we collected our suitcases, my dad and I walked through the doors and we could finally hug my mom and brother!

Welcome Home
You can see how happy we were to see each other. ^^

The balloons both floated for at least three months after we came back! After hugging at least ten times we left the hall, talking and talking. Outside, big screens told us the big news that the leader of Libia had been killed that day. It was so strange to be hit in the face with news from the word. To me, it was as if time had stood still and now we were put back into reality (I did have quite a heavy jetlag the days after too).
Driving back home was strange. We talked a lot of course, but at the same time I looked back upon our adventures. I’ve seen and done things I will never forget. I’ve experienced the journey of a lifetime!


Thank you all so much for reading about my adventures in Tokyo! I hope you enjoyed them! All of your comments were incredibly sweet and they always made me really happy! Also, thank you for your patience with me. I’ve been incredibly slow with posting and I sincerely apologize for that. I wrote these reports mainly for myself so I would be able to remember (almost) everything, so I wanted them to be perfect. That combined with work and music wasn’t a great combination. Of course, by being so slow, I might forget things more easily, so next time I really need to be faster. So thank you for staying with me!
And you know what: maybe we’re going back to Japan this year! My mom became so enthusiastic after seeing our pictures and hearing our stories that she has decided she wants to go too! Only my brother isn’t too keen on the idea yet, but we’ll see. So maybe I’m going back! Fingers crossed… And if we’re going, I’ll try to be faster with my reports! Thank you~! ♥


  1. Haha, I can't believe they have IKEA in Japan too!
    And although I have no idea who Judi Dench is, it was fun to hear that you're from the Netherlands, I have actually been wondering about that :P

    1. I know right? =D
      Judi Dench is, among many other great roles, M in the James Bond movies. ^^
      Haha, I never really mention it. XD I still wonder if I should remove it from this post again...

  2. I've so enjoyed reading about your Japan adventures. I want to go there too. But it will probably be on my own because no one can or wants to come with me:(
    But I enjoy reading your trip and it prepares me of where I can go and what I can see there^^
    I'll write a diary like this too^^

    1. I'm glad you did!
      I hope you'll go soon! ^^ If you have any questions, you can always ask!

  3. I also enjoyed reading about your Japan trip. You wrote in such detail and your pictures were lovely. I hope everything works out and you get to return ^ ^

  4. Awwww welcome home! And your family is so awesome~ I hope you get to go to Japan again! ♥ And I loved every single post! I can't wait to see what else you will be posting here :3

    ~ Kieli ~

    1. Thank you so much for your sweet comment. ^^

  5. Aww, that is the Tokyo Sunroute Plaza Shinjuku hotel right? I stayed in the same place when I was in Japan! I miss the big clock as well XDD

    It is amazing that you are maybe going back! I wish you tons of luck with that :3

    And now I'm off to keep reading your report! XD


    1. Yes it was! That's so cool! ^^

      Thank you~! <3