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Posted: June 7, 2011 in Life As I Know It, Travel
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5 weeks is both a very long time, and a very short time. Of course it all depends on context, and perspective. I arrived back in Denver on Thursday night at around 9pm. I was fortunate that getting off the plane was quick, and my suitcase was very early out of the little baggage dumper belt thingy, so the Ladyfriend and I were able to exit quite quickly without too much time hanging around the airport. I’d done enough of that for one day.

While landing at 9p wasn’t all that bad, it had been a terribly long flight. I left my hotel in Saigon at approximately 9am, and arrived at the airport a half an hour early to check in for my flight. They hadn’t actually opened that particular airline counter yet, so after just sort of walking around, taking in the sights, and looking out the window at what I could see of downtown Saigon to take in the last sight I could before leaving. In all reality I’ll probably never go back to Vietnam, but I’ll continually entertain the notion that I might. So I breathed in my last few breaths of the city and checked in for my flight. Fortunately enough I had business class tickets home — as this was a business trip after all (the Philippines portion anyway) The company paid for my flight to & from Asia; I just had to come up with the difference for the flight from Manila to Saigon, a paltry $350. So I checked in, got through immigration and security and all those places, and promptly found my way to the lounge, reserved for special business class and first class passengers like myself. Happy I skipped breakfast at the hotel (the breakfast buffet in Saigon was atrocious) I indulged on a couple sandwich halves, some pastry treats, and a couple glasses of iced tea — free! I had wireless, talked to some friends, checked emails and sports scores and before long packed up to board.

It was a fairly quick puddle jumper to Taipei, just about 3 hours. Where I then had an hour and a half or so worth of a layover, so I stole away to their business lounge (very, very nice) and had a couple drinks and a snack before getting on the 12 hour long-haul from Taipei to LAX. They served lots of food, several drinks, I ate well, slept for a few hours, and watched like 5 hours of movies on the personal tv screen that comes with each seat. I woke up several times during the night that was really day (the flight left Taipei at 6p yet landed in LA at 3:30p the same day) sweating and incredibly hot. I wasn’t terribly comfortable either. They advertise that they have these “lie flat” seats…that they don’t really have. Don’t get me wrong, they’re fairly comfortable but saying they’re lie flat is like calling your Alfa Romeo a Ferrari. They’re slightly slanted, so you slide down the seat when trying to sleep. It’s not the best, but it certainly isn’t coach, so I’m not complaining. Simply noting their misnomer.

Overall the flight went quickly, and despite a scare at LAX with being absolutely positive for about 20 minutes that I wouldn’t make my flight to Denver, everything went mostly as planned. Though as a brief aside, I must admit that switching to coach for the last 2 hours after flying the previous 15 in Business Class was a pretty big shocker. I know, #WhiteProblems and everything, but I’m not saying I’m special and should have business class all the time — just that the switch was pretty jarring.

So it’s good to be home. I’m almost done adjusting, though my sleep patterns are still a little off. I’ve been getting tired very early, crashing at 3p and about 9p, and getting up at 5a almost like clockwork. I should probably take advantage of the 9p and 5a part of it all, but we’ll see what happens.

It’s been a pretty whirlwind first few days back, though. after landing at 9p on a Thursday, I spent a few hours at work the next day, and then spent the weekend active and trying to stay awake (and watching hockey.) I was fortunate enough to have a welcome home party at a local bar, planned by my lovely Ladyfriend. Then of course this week back to work… Not bad so far, but it’s definitely taking some adjusting.

Despite evidence to the contrary, I will definitely have updates coming soon. I’ve got a boatload of photos to organize, and will get up some slideshows of my time in Vietnam, and a final update about the Philippines portion of my trip. Plus all the usual stuff. Coming soon. But for now, I’m just enjoying being back in my own country for the first time in 5 weeks 🙂

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