2018 Incredible Japan – Update #2

Not long now – so time for another update.

Japanese Yen has been purchased – just as well their exchange rate hasn’t died like the US Dollar.

Certainly going to be a challenge using a currency that I have never used before.  It has lots of interesting looking people on it that’s for sure.

Instead of ordering and picking it up at Travelex Bankstown like I have done for all my previous trips, I made the decision to pick it up at the Post Office close to home because I thought it would be easier – big mistake.  By the time I got there after work the line was practically out the door (isn’t Australia Post just wonderful?), there were 3 people serving and all three had customers that had problems that were taking ages to solve.

Doesn’t anyone go there just to buy a stamp or pay a bill these days?  Obviously not.  To add insult to injury one of the customers did not speak goodly English and this developed into a shouting match with the lady behind the counter!  But 20 minutes later I am at the head of the queue and then it took another 20 minutes to sign all the paperwork and get the cash.  A great lesson in patience.  Definitely will go to Travelex next time!

OK – rant over.

With only 4 weeks to go – I have eagerly been awaiting the Tour Notes from Incredible Tours.  Finally it has arrived.

A 29 page booklet full of interesting information like how to get from Haneda Airport to the Hotel in Tokyo when I arrive or what to do if I get stuck in an earthquake.

Japan, if you didn’t know is part of a seismically active area so it’s good to be prepared – I need to stay calm but move fast and take cover from falling objects.  Hopefully they do not mean the hotel falling!

I am being positive and will not get any earthquakes or tsunamis and everything will go according to plan.  After a quick look through the book, I am wondering if this was a good idea! My brain is telling me ‘what the hell were you thinking?  There are 3 options to get up at 3am to see the tuna auctions – might give two of those a miss.  I suppose I will have to do one of them just to get the experience – unfortunately no photos are allowed.

There are several very long shooting days starting with pre-dawn mornings which will extend into late night to capture the incredible night lights.  All our breakfasts are at the hotels (which do look ‘incredible’ on Tripadvisor) but other meals seem to be on the go except for our lunch with a geisha and 2 specialty dinners.

Maybe I will be glad to get on the plane to come home and sleep all the way back to Sydney – then again maybe I will be taking photos of my food and making notes of flight details for you because I know how much you love them!

Time to start the lists of what to pack in the check-in bag; the camera carry on bag and my personal bag.

Seriously – I am really looking forward to this – I will have to get out the DVD’s of Joanna Lumley’s Japan to watch again.

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