Dan in JapanJump to Table of ContentsReturn to Main Page
 [1.02] Plane Ride, First JCMU Pictures Last updated 
04 Jan 1999 

Going to Japan 02 Jan 1999
After arriving at the airport and checking my luggage, I waited for my plane to arrive. The snow had started to fall around 9:00 AM, and the Northwest 747 showed up just after noon.

We boarded at about 1 PM, and were stuck on the ground for at least two and a half hours while they tried to get the plane's electrical system working. They blamed the weather and told us to get off (they could fix it faster if they could turn off the heat and lights). We left our carry-on luggage in the plane.

When evening came (and the intense blizzard with it), they told us we might be able to leave at 7 PM, but when 7 came, they made us get our carry-on luggage out of the plane. Since the storm was so severe, the next scheduled departure time was set at 7 AM the next day. But since the storm was so severe, no one could leave the airport. Taxis, busses, and family members would not brave the conditions, save very few exceptions.

The flight attendants brought the meals (if you can call them that) off the plane, and there was a mad rush as more than 150 people grabbed for their share. We had to eat what we could on the floor. I was not too happy, knowing I would have to sleep on the airport floor that night. I got about 3 and a half hours of sleep.

That morning, the plane was not ready to go at 7 AM (and there was probably 10 inches of snow on the ground at this point -- not much of a deal for the yoopers I'm used to, but a big deal for Detroit). They pushed the departure time to noon. We waited until noon, and boarded shortly after. We then waited on the plane for at least 2-3 hours while they fixed "engine number 4". After that was fixed, the truck that pushes planes toward the runway would not budge, so they had to get another. And then we waited our turn in line to be de-iced.

We finally took off at about 4:30 PM. That means I waited 30 hours from the time I arrived at the airport until the time I left the ground! The plane ride, which lasted a mere 12.5 hours, seemed like heaven. As we zoomed out of Detroit, and over Traverese City, and then over Marquette, in about an hour, I gobbled down my food and took a picture of snowy Michigan with sunset-lit clouds.

Because of the delays, many people were switched onto other flights, and so there were lots of empty seats. I had 3 all to myself! It was not hard to sleep on the plane; I easily slept for 7 hours or so.

When I arrived in Nagoya, Japan, I was feeling quite oily. As soon as I got into my room (about 11:00 PM local time), I unpacked, showered with glee, and smiled for a photo before going to bed.

The First Day 04 Jan 1999
I awoke using a weird alarm clock which plays an increasingly loud musical ditty until you wake up. After an initial orientation and some bookkeeping, we were assigned bicycles. I chose mine, and used it to ride to a restaurant, eat lunch, and then take some pictures. The temperature was at least 55 F.

Here's a view of JCMU from across Lake Biwa.
Here's a panorama of the academic building (classrooms/offices) on the left, and the apartments on the right. My room is the leftmost room on the first floor.
Here's the side door, which is right next to the outside of my room.
Here's where one enters my apartment. The kitchen area to the right has a huge sink, and a gas stove (with miniature oven). On the wall is the master hot water control for the kitchen. You select a temperature at which to dispense hot water (if the control is turned off, no hot water exists). Once you turn it on, it only takes about 1 minute to get hot water. There is a similar control in the shower. Very interesting, I thought.

While looking toward the entrance, to the left is the fridge, toaster oven, phone, and bathroom door. The bathroom is almost one piece of continuous plastic, from the tub to the floor to the walls. Opposite the kitchen is the cabinet of dishes, and to the right of the kitchen is my bedroom. I have a desk, a bed, a built-in dresser, closet, and bookshelf. Looking out my window, you can see Coco's (red neon letters), a restaurant attached to the academic building. In the other direction, you can see this.

Down the hallway, in the front of the JCMU dormitory, is the lobby/lounge.

And that's all for this group of pictures!

back | forward | contents | home Shigaraki Tanuki Statue