Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Things You See In A Japanese Airport


This is a story from my trip to Japan in late December 2009...


There are many things that you’ll encounter during your time in a Japanese airport that are interesting. Here are a few that I saw in the three airports that I was in over the course of two days.

Tokyo has two airports. The first is Narita and it's the main international airport that most people coming to Japan will go through. The second airport is Haneda and it serves mostly domestic flights. They are about one-and-a-half hours apart and you need to take a bus or train to get from one to the other.

The below picture shows the baggage claim area at Narita. What I find most interesting is that everyone is standing back to allow everyone else to see what luggage is coming around. When each person’s luggage gets to where they are, they step forward and pull their bag out. I compare this to the baggage claim area at pretty much every other airport in the world that I’ve ever been to and I’ve never seen one with such polite people. Gotta’ love ‘em!

In the Haneda airport, I was in the snack shop and saw these kids' Pikachu bento boxes. It’s the equivalent of a McDonald’s Happy Meal. This one contains corn and rice in an egg omelette, curry fried rice, fried chicken, and pizza-flavored fried bread. I think the “surprise” is some sort of fish cake. Yum! What I thought was cool is how it is wrapped in a Pikachu cloth.

After arrival at Nagasaki’s airport, I came across this giant bowl of Chanpon. Chanpon is a type of soup or stew that this area of Japan is known for. Chanpon roughly means "a mixture of all different things". In this case, it’s a combination of things like vegetables, pork, and seafood. It made me super hungry and I wasn’t satisfied until two days later when I finally had an amazing Chanpon in downtown Nagasaki at a mom-and-pop-style restaurant. I wish you all could have been there to enjoy it!

This last photo isn’t really that “Japanese-y” but I thought that it was an interesting and cool piece of sculpture. It was suspended from the ceiling in Haneda over the check-in area and is about 30 feet long and constructed of clear plastic.

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