Travel Note

27th August 2005

This is not a proper trip report. However, I think it useful as a benchmark for the reader, so that my mental state over the next few days while I recharge personal batteries can be judged the better. All times are in GMT; Hong Kong and Taiwan are seven hours ahead, and Japan is eight hours ahead.

  • 10:15: Left home.
  • 10:30: Caught express bus to Dublin Airport.
  • 11:05: Joined check in line for Aer Lingus.
  • 12:00: Reached front of this line and checked in for flights.
  • 12:15: Cleared security, bought a newspaper, and caught up with email.
  • 13:00: Took flight from Dublin to London Heathrow.
  • 14:15: Landed in Heathrow, and walked to Terminal 3.
  • 14:30: Found somewhere to sit, and waited for George.
  • 15:30: Got bored, and bought a meal.
  • 16:30: George arrived, cleared security, and made way to gate.
  • 18:00: Took Cathay Pacific flight to Hong Kong.
  • 06:30: Landed in Hong Kong. Bought second lunch.
  • 07:50: Took Cathay Pacific flight to Taipei.
  • 09:00: Landed in Taipei.
  • 10:00: Took Cathay Pacific flight to Fukuoka.
  • 12:50: Arrived in Fukuoka.
  • 12:55: Discover that my mobile phone works perfectly in Japan, despite being told unequivocally by my provider that it would not.
  • 13:15: Cleared baggage reclaim and customs, and took taxi to Hotel.
  • 13:30: Discover taxi driver has left us at train station and we can't find hotel.
  • 13:35: Helpful local speaking perfect English asks us if we need help. We do.
  • 13:40: Arrive at hotel, visible from where we had been standing but signed in Kanji.
  • 13:55: Discover bathroom fitted with crazy Japanese electronic toilet with water sprays. Provides several minutes amusement.
  • 14:00: Collapse in to bed, truly exhausted.

Though it may sound profoundly obvious to the seasoned traveller, I learned something useful in today's expedition. Three connection points on the same journey (London, Hong Kong, and Taipei) is both stressful and inefficient. Next time I travel anywhere far from home I'll be looking for a one-stop route if possible.