Dec 6 – The Longest Day in 2004

Flying around the globe creates very interesting phenomenon regarding time. The time difference is one of them, and the International Date Line is another. The resulting jet lag is not-so-interesting one.

I got up at 6:00 AM, two hours earlier than average, to catch flight to Tokyo at 8:55 AM, Dec 6, 2004. When I arrived in Tokyo, I happily found it is already 12:35. The 2 hour and 40 minutes flight ate one hour of my day. I love to lose one hour in my schedule. It meant I was closer to my bed so I can have a nice sleep earlier, right?

I was somewhat tired after the trip, but still excited. In the next five hours, I waited in the long line of Japanese custom and took train to the city of Narita. It was 10 minute train’s ride from NRT (Narita airport). I was really tired after walking with my big bag on my back – I regretted that I hadn’t checked it in at Shanghai airport so I went to the United counter to check it before my NRTSEA trip. At 5:25 PM, it is already dark outside in Tokyo. It may because the latitude of Tokyo is higher than Beijing. The winter of Tokyo seems like Beijing. Seated on a Boeing 777 of flight UA876, I reviewed the 200 pictures I took in my short stay in Japan, concluding that the day just passed was a very meaningful day.

Night came. I fell asleep, dreamed, waked up, ate/drunk something, fell asleep againÂ… I repeated the circle again and again on the plane. I guess I slept 50% of the trip, ate 30%, and idled 20% of the time on the aircraft. When I was so bored and I wanted to stop this journey as soon as possible, I found there were still 4 hours left in the journey. Long night!

The most interesting part of the story happened when I arrive in Seattle. After 8 hours of flight, the clock at Seattle airport indicated that it was 7:55 in early morning on December 6, 2004, the same day I left Shanghai. It was exactly the time when I completed the check-in procedure at Pudong Airport. It was so funny.

After that, I waited in the long line to pass the U.S. custom, claimed my baggage, rent a car at Avis, practiced driving on the foreign land for one hour and successfully drove to hotel via I-5. Since the training starts the next day, I conducted city tour in the afternoon, had simple lunch and dinner and bought a cup of coffee in the first Starbucks store in the world. I spent the night to watch an experiment drama named Holiday XXX from Live Girls!. It was fantastic. The two actors and two actresses performed the one-act drama three times according to three different scripts by three different writers. There are 10 audiences during the play.

When the drama ended, I chatted with the artists. I mentioned: “It is so nice to end the day of Dec 6 with such a beautiful drama. It is the longest day for me in 2004″. Someone asked road on my way back hotel. I laughed. “I’m afraid I have no idea. I just arrived in this city this morning.” I said. Meanwhile, it came into my mind that “If you asked me about the day of Dec 6, I am more confident to give you an answer because I have stayed in this day for 40 hours already.”

P.S. This page is published at 12:14 AM 12/8/2004

8 thoughts on “Dec 6 – The Longest Day in 2004

  1. lao wang, glad to hear from you again! i suggest you change the subtitle to – events (in the world) that affect my life (and others). how about the starbucks cafe? did you notice the “tower”? i am looking forward to ur pics of this journey. enjoy the rest of it and come back soon!

  2. Mr. Wang,

    Jet lag can be severe especially when you fly east bound across Pacific, however the same can be mild when return to Shanghai.


  3. JS, Welcome to the States!! Hope the weather gets better for you. But east coast seem unseasonably warm these days.

    But I have to say what is the deal with “holiday XXX with live girls”…did you goto a strip joint? just curious

    anyway enjoy your stay in Seattle!!

  4. Welcome to the States! My advice on combating jet-lag is to have a good sleep after taking a good 30 mins-plus bath/spa. It actually is no-good for you to spend long time hanging out right on the first day. Anyway, good luck with your journey.

  5. Meghan from Live Girls! theater in Seattle here. No it’s not in room entertainment! But we do laugh when people ask, we have a warped sense of humor. We are actually a theater that promotes new and under produced plays by women, and Holiday XXX is a writing experiment were we commission 3 holiday plays based on the same characters and produce them all in one night.

    Visit our site to check out what we do,

    Thanks for visiting us Jian, you are great!

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