The journey home has been a long and incredulous one. And incredulous isn’t just some long, fancy word I thesaurus’d, people literally (yes, literally literally) did not believe our travel situ when it had to be explained at various points.
Got picked up at the Hakuba hotel at 8am (GMT/UTC + 09:00 hour) by our emergency transport ambulance drivers on the 5th. Sooooo excited to leave my #greaseball life in the hotel room behind!
Drove into Tokyo strapped to a stretcher. We made great time despite having to make a pit stop at my Shinjuku hostel to pick up my main pack and the lack of going above 80 km on the highways. Made pee stops being wheeled into washrooms still strapped on the stretcher #NBD. I already miss their heated toilet seats. And those Japanese roads doe – had zero bumpage, road maintenance is on poinnnnnt.
Arrived at the Narita airport at around 2pm. Said goodbye to our ambulance, which was pretty much the stretch limo of ambulances.
Travel Duration: 6 hours Japanese ground transport
Flight wasn’t until 7pm, so we had plenty of time to eat and shop. I don’t think I’ve ever been more excited to be in an airport. Being holed up in a hotel room, staring at the same four walls for 4.5 days is beyond boring. First things first, we needed to get S some real sushi. As decent as sushi from Lawson’s were – S defo needed to have some non-convenience store sushi. We went to Tsukiji Sushiiwa in T1 before the passport checkpoint. I picked the place because of the “Tsukiji” in the name and concluded that the fish must be super fresh straight from the famed fish market! S swiftly bursted my bubble by stating that most sushi joints probably get their fish from that market, as it is one of the world’s largest fish markets. Pssssfft, whatevs. Spent an awkward 5 minutes trying to shove my wheelchair into the restaurant. We then shopped for a bit and bought SAKE KIT KATS (with real alcohol in them. I know, we’re now BFFs right?), dope assss underwear with traditional Japanese drawings of sumo wrestlers on them (they’re meant for men, but, dun care), and, of course, some duty-free Japo Whiskey.
Had to go back to the check-in counter at 5pm to be VIP (for broken people) escorted through security and immigration. I adore not waiting in line. Silver lining right? Made S wait in line to buy us Cremia soft serve. Because a) soft serve is da bomb and b) this soft serve is 12.5% made up of carefully chosen Hokkaido milk and 25% of heavy cream. So milky. Much creamy. #fatkids4lyfe
Travel Duration: 5 hours dicking around the Narita airport
Had to pay to fly first class because I needed to lay flat. The 5 hour stint on the wheelchair was already sending some serious pain vibes to my lower extremities. Despite going through travel insurance I still had to pony up $1,500 USD to secure the seat. Which, sucks an extremely large bag of dicks, because, the Canadian dollar. But, what can you do? And while I still stand by my opinion that Air Asia is the #1 dbag of airlines, I will NEVER, in my life (when I become obscenely wealthy, obvi), purchase a first class ticket from Air Canada. The whole ticket was like $5,000 USD and you’d think that if people are paying that amount of monies to a company, their customer service would be top fucking notch. But no, AC is full of aged unionized workers who aren’t afraid to lose their jobs – so they are sassy AF.
Obviously, not all of them, one lady was super nice and helped me take off my shoes (because I can’t bend forward and is essentially a child) and another was always super nice when he had to go get S to medicate me. The other ones doe…. I essentially got scolded for asking for food in the middle of the night because I was hungry. The old Asian lady stewardess reluctantly brought over a fruit basket when I asked for fruit and chastised me when I tried to take a banana AND an orange. She lectured me about how her giant fruit basket has to feed TWENTY other people. Lady, the flight was like 3/4 over and no one else had even asked for fruit. And besides, for FIVE THOUSAND DOLLAS you’d think I could have 2 dollars worth of fruit. The kicker? Basket was untouched by anyone else when we landed. Maybe I just have a face that old Asian ladies like to scold?
And then this other old White man stewardess essentially tried to shove my crutches at me right as we landed when it was very obvious I was still strugglin’ hard to even sit up. Srsly doe, what do you think I’m going to do with those thangs sitting down? #getittogetherAC
Also, I couldn’t sleep the whole flight. I think my sleep is seriously affected by airflow. I don’t understand why airplanes always have all their fans in the off position at boarding. I think they should all be open to promote air circulation and flow and then if people are cold in their seats they can shut them off #IMO. Also also, Sleeping with Other People was an adorbsies movie. Jason Sudeikis is a total DILF. Also we birthday twinnnns.
Travel Duration: 8 hours in flight + 1 hour typical airplane crap
Got picked up by ground transport at the Vancouver airport at 11:30 am (GMT/UTC – 08:00 hour) and strapped myself in (well, got strapped in) for another sweet gurney ambulance ride. Canadian roads are rouuuuugh. Had all the bumpage, road maintenance seriously lacking compared to the Japanese. But speed limit doe, our EMS driver was roaring down the highway. Until the weather got shitty, then there was much less roaring to be done. Fell asleep quite a number of times during the ride (bumpy gurney ride > first class flight?). Had to make a pee stop in Revelstoke and the convenience store lady was much too excitable by the sight of me being wheeled in on the gurney. Small towns, #amirite? Picked up Timmie’s for dinner. Very Canadian of us for our first meal back in Canadia.
We were making really good time until…one of our tires blew. Flat tire right outside of Sunshine. The EMS people were really apologetic and kept saying that they were brand new tires and not sure why it happened. But S and I just thought it was pretty funny, in that ironic, sad kinda way.
They called Banff EMS to take us into Calgary. Finally made it to Rocky View Emerg at like 1:30 am (GMT/UTC – 07:00 hour). So 2 ambulances later, our much delayed 10 hour drive arrived at its final destination.
Travel Duration: 13 hours Canadian ground transport
Got admitted into the ER and played the waiting game. I think there was a bar fight that happened because 7 very unsavoury, young people all with
head face injuries defo butted me in line. Silver lining: there was a pretty adorable doctor on the night shift that was constantly in the handsome thinking doctor pose right outside of my bed. I’m all about dat silver lining these days. The (not handsome) doctor saw me at about 6am, got re-xrayed by much gentler hands this go around. Cortical flake fracture in the pelvis, approx. 6 weeks to heal. Treatment plan: it’s just gonna hurt like a bitch until it doesn’t. Got a prescription for painkillers but then promptly remembered that I no longer have health coverage due to the whole unemployed thing. Soooo…we’re going to play a game called “see how long Kelly can stretch out 15 painkillers” and find out just how high my pain tolerance actually is…
Travel Duration: 6.5 hours dicking around the Rocky View ER
Hakuba hotel room to Calgary childhood home: 39.5 hours
3 ambulances, 1 flat tire, 6 medics, and 1 awesome friend later = travels TBC in 6 to 8 weeks