So long, Tioman, Hello, Tokyo!

It was a sad morning when we packed up and left the island.

I can´t report much else than as the staff that drove us to the airport waved goodbye, I felt a little bit like crying.

But then Kiddo started to run away from me in the little tiny airport to try to climb on the X-Ray machine so I was snapped from my reverie.

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Tioman from the plane. Bye, bye, paradise!

The flight was all right. Not quite so deathly warm as the flight over – but maybe that had to do with expectations. We hit some clouds as we descended into Singapore, which, in those little planes can be like a roller coaster you didn’t think you signed up for. The most notable part was the 20-minute tantrum Kiddo had (Ok, maybe it was less but it felt that long). Wow. I thought she had had tantrums before but man, was I wrong, those were slight upsets. This was the motherload. She was tired and hadn’t eaten anything but a little ice cream at the airport and one handful of noodles, plus I think she was really hot. Bad combo, my friends. I was asking her to sit down as the fasten seatbelt signs had gone on and we had a meltdown. A screaming, kicking, growling meltdown. Guys, she wouldn’t even breastfeed. I was at a total loss, and I was loosing my shit too, since I was also hot and in a confined space with what I perceived as no leeway to be an understanding, compassionate listener. But then I had a magical moment where I thought of something that has always been connected to the positive for her, that is: Mickey Mouse! I started singing her the Mickey Mouse song, and then narrating a couple of the cartoons I could remember the plots to, and suddenly, she was fine. Although I asked her if she was mad at me and she nodded. Ha!

Anyway, eventually we landed in Singapore. We had a ten-hour layover, which went fairly quickly. We picked up our luggage from storage, rearranged some things, went to the lounge, ate lots of food, played on the escalators, and then even though we didn’t feel like it, trekked to find the swimming pool that we heard is at the airport. It was great! You had to pay about $10 to go in, but they had towels and showers and it was great. Kiddo got out some energy and we got to shower before the long flight. All we had time for after that was one more trip to the lounge for some more food and then it was time to board!

Kiddo slept on my lap for most of the 6 hour red eye, but I did get some sleep, and so did Hubby.

Arriving in Tokyo was like a dream. It was dawn, we were out of it, and here we were, the place we had been looking forward to and at the same time dreading (“we won´t even be able to read the signs!”). Everything was smooth and clean and efficient and soon we were at our hotel.

Hubby had found an excellent deal on one of the nicest hotels in Tokyo – The Imperial Hotel. It has big rooms, which is unheard of except at blood prices. They gave us our room at 7:30 in the morning, free of charge. We could not have been more thrilled as it meant we could nap. After we found some Japanese breakfast, we all slept for almost 4 hours and woke up refreshed, with just enough time to meet Hubby´s sister as she and her boyfriend arrived to join us for a week.

We had sushi at a chain restaurant, did some shopping in Ginza, went back to the hotel for a rest, and then tried two restaurants for dinner: a bar with lots of fried pork for appetizers, and then after lots of walking and indecision, a noodle bar for the main course. Kiddo ate a whole bowl of edamame at the first place and then half my udon at the second one. I love watching her enjoy food – it can be a rare event.

Then we went home to crash. Tomorrow we will meet my high school friend who lives with his wife and baby in Tokyo. I am so excited – it has been years!

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