Carl Sensei.com / Mass Mail #1
From: Carl Subject: as you can guess, i'm here in tokyo, typing on my computer Date: 平成16年7月25日 9:59:35 pm JST To: Family, S---
I'm in Tokyo now. I think I'm at or close to Japan time internally, since I slept on the plane, and I'm not feeling particularly "Lost in Translation"-y. Coming this time, seeing the weird Japanese stuff is more like revisiting some lost childhood fantasy world than visiting some totally alien culture. So, that's fun, I guess.
The Atlanta departure group seems to have bonded over our shared trials as we waited in line at the check-in, literally for hours. The flight even had to be delayed by like 40 minutes, but it didn't hurt any connections, so it was OK. My green suitcase was 13 pounds overweight, but the family of a Furman friend promised to mail me the stuff I desperately pulled out of the case in order to avoid the multi-hundred dollar fine. That was very nice of them.
Narita Airport is about as far from Tokyo as an airport is legally allowed to be and still be called "the Tokyo Airport" but the bus ride wasn't too bad. The people in Tokyo were a thousand times more organized (and numerous) than the people in Atlanta, so it wasn't a problem.
I'm staying in the glitzy "Shinjuku" area of Tokyo at the Keio Hotel. I wandered around before and got some beef curry and a "Gokuri" orange/grapefruit drink. The electronics store was too shiny for words.
The kimono count is at 2 or 3 right now.
I'll write a more thorough email later for more public dissemination, but I just wanted to shoot off something now to let you know I'm here/OK.