Tuesday, August 31, 2004

Jet lag is no fun

I keep dozing off in the early evening in front of the TV. Just like my father! Strangely, I was about to fall asleep during the Bush daughters' speech tonight, but woke up to talk back to the TV like I usually do. (Yes, I'm a complete whack job.)

One final thought on my Asia trip:

Based on my co-workers' stories and my impressions from guidebooks and other sources, I expected to be lost in Tokyo and right at home in Hong Kong. I thought for sure that I'd like having the possibility of an extra day for tourism in Hong Kong and that any time available for such things in Tokyo would be welcome, but useless, given the language barrier.

I was completely wrong. I fully enjoyed Tokyo and wish that I'd had another day there to explore. I had no trouble finding my way, the lack of communication only made things more interesting, and I loved the food. I got sick on the food in Hong Kong, visited the only major tourist attraction on my first day there, and discovered that there was nothing else to do aside from work but shop and sweat. Maybe I would have enjoyed it more if I hadn't been miserable for three or four days, but I think I would just have been bored. I like to visit foreign cities that offer historic sights, not just modern consumerism. In Tokyo, I got a sense that the city's past was readily accessible, that it's been there for hundreds of years. Hong Kong, while it's definitely an old city, doesn't look or feel like it's been there for more than 50 years.

My Hong Kong hotel did have better English TV channels than the hotel in Tokyo, and thank God for that, or I'd really have been in trouble. Tokyo offered Japanese baseball, Olympic baseball (featuring Japan), and more Japanese baseball.
At least when I couldn't go out in the evenings, I got to see American TV shows (Law & Order, CSI, Smallville) and other Olympic sports.

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