Around the World in 80 Days: Day 1, Fluids

Travel tip: When flying, pack an empty water bottle to get through the security check then simply fill it up when you’re in the airport! Voila. Free water.

My travel day started at 4AM. Up, dress, brush teeth, go. It was overcast and while I got dressed it sprinkled. Once I looked at my husband and said, “Ready?” the sky opened up and vomited water all over our yard, and street, and baby bunnies, and the barbecue pit, and me. It rained the whole way to the airport. This is Fluid #1. (There are no pictures in this post. If you need visuals, go ahead and do an image search for rain. It’s cool. I’ll wait.)

The drive was quiet at first. It was early, we were tired, and I still had a travel anxiety hangover in full swing. Ryder put some music on and I didn’t hate it. We made jokes as we warmed up a little but I secretly battled tears. Fluid #2. I always cry when I leave my husband for any significant length of time. I held it together (for him, for me, for science) until it was time to hug him goodbye. Then I let forth my pent-up emotions so completely that I impressed a small gaggle of girls entering the airport who pointed, gasped, golf-clapped, and silently wept with me. (You will most likely win the lottery before you ever see me cry much less any photo documentation of it.)

Fly to LA. 4 hour layover. All good. I’m wearing this pretty, white, see-through, long-sleeved shirt over a polka dotted tank top. Elegant on top, adorable underneath. That is until your pretty white top is drenched in pit sweat. Fluid #3. No problem. I’ll wash it in a bathroom sink and dry it with a Dyson hand dryer. Order a Cuban sammich for breakfast… and grease, pickle juice, and other various and sundry Latin liquids leak out of the wrapper and onto my white shirt which is depreciating in value by the minute. We’ll call this Fluid Set #4. I wash it in the sink and get it halfway dried but when it was time to board and put it on it’s still damp. (You want pics of pit sweat and grease stains? WTF is wrong with you?)

Remember that great travel tip I gave you? I filled this cool water bottle that Ryder bought for me that has its own filter in it.  Fluid #5.  I screwed the cap shut and put it in my carry-on with my laptop and a few other things… right? Are you thinking what I’m thinking? ‘Cause what I’m thinking is how carefully I’ve planned every last damn detail of this trip and I’m feeling pretty congratulatory about it. On the plane to Tokyo surrounded by adorable Japanese people it suddenly struck me that maybe my cool bottle is upside down or sideways in the bag in the overhead compartment with my laptop. Could it be leaking? Once the seat belt sign was turned off I sprang out of my seat, opened the overhead bin, and sure enough the inside of my carry-on is wet. My neck pillow is wet. The inside of my computer bag is… moist. You know what isn’t wet? The water bottle. Also, by the gods, not wet, is my laptop. I give credit to an extra computer sleeve that added a waterproof barrier. A wet computer would have destroyed my trip. I squeezed out my neck pillow and used it. Moist. There are tiny green mushrooms sprouting from the left side of my face. (Yes. I know that technically most of these fluids are the same. If you’d like a visual, sit your laptop on a felt blanket and put a bunch of papers with lists of passwords and things you need to do and buy written in red felt marker and pour about 2 cups of water on all but your laptop.)

Did you know that wine is served for *FREE* on the Delta flight from LA to Tokyo? Fluid #6. Lots of Fluid #6. Also downed some coffee before I landed. Fluid #7.

It’s raining in Tokyo. Fluid #8. No surprise there. It’s typhoon season! I’d been warned about the humidity but, I mean, the temperature is in the 70’s and it feels great but wow… it’s friggin’ humid here. On the train into Shibuya droplets of sweat gathered, had beers, sang drinking songs, and collectively decided to bar hop down the center of my back until they passed out in my crack. I don’t know about you but that is not a place where I’d like to have a beer. In addition, the pit sweat is back and after 20 hours of travel I am RIPE. I had to grip a handle above me on the train to keep from bumping into adorable Japanese people when the train started and stopped, though I’m sure my aroma may have knocked out a few of the weaker ones. Sorry, adorable Japanese people. (Need visuals? Please draw a picture of me with my arms raised in the air at one end of a train car with a trail of passed out Japanese people on the floor leading to a huddled mass of panic-stricken survivors at the other end of the train car.)

Made it to the hotel, actually physically led by a complete stranger who took a good 45 minutes out of his day to escort me to the door. (Another story for sure!) Once settled I found a place that was willing to sell me raw fish and rice. Got soy sauce and green tea. Fluids #9 and #10. To top off the day after being awake for 26 hours (minus a one hour nap) I had a shower. I can hardly remember when a shower felt so good. Sweet, sweet water.

Love, ~S

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