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My flight was on KLM Royal Dutch Airlines departing from Kansai airport at 11 a.m. I went to Osaka the day before my departure because I was living in Sendai now. I felf a little bit nervous because I hadn't been to Osaka for a long time! "Osaka is a big city, I know." I got a fresh reminder of it...

On the day after I stayed at Osaka, I boarded the flight. The plane to Europe was pretty big. I was getting nervous. I imagined a 12 hour flight to Amsterdam Airport Schiphol would be boring and I was tired. The only consolation I had was that there was lots of footspace because my seat was in front of the screen and there was nobody beside me.

left:I listened to the captain's in-flight announcement "We are flying over Russia towards Amsterdam."
right:a lucky charm for safe airplane. I bought this unique charm at a famous shrine in Kyoto(Japan).

After taking off, the plane flew up north over Japan. Takeoff always makes me so nervous.... I had come down from Sendai City which was in the north part of Japan then I was going up north over Japan today. I was doing something which was a waste of money and time. It was unnecessary! This was the first time I knew that the KLM bound for Amsterdam takes the eastern route....

I like watching in-flight movies and I looked at the in-flight magazine hopefully. Oh-, there were two movies, one was 'The Terminal' starring Tom Hanks. The other one was 'Tomorrow is Another Day', which was a Japanese movie starring lots of comedians who speak Japanese with a Kansai dialect. 'The Terminal' was in English, with Japanese subtitles. And vice-versa for the other movie, 'Tomorrow is Another Day', which was subtitled in English for non-Japanese. "Why do I have to watch that kind of Japanese movie here!" I thought at first. But it was a funny movie and it was really interesting to compare the English subtitle with the Japanese dialogue, especially when it was in Kansai dialect! However, I found there were lots of differences between the nuance of standard Japanese, Kansai dialect and English. I sensed a slight discrepancy in that translation. Anyway, I hope to be able to watch a English movie without subtitles someday....

left:I heard we would pass by the Noth Pole. "I wonder if there is a flag there...", I thought.

After all of things, I finally arrived at Amsterdam. It was just a transfer and I had to board another plane. I began looking for a transfer gate. But the airport was large, too large! I saw gate No98, 99,100 .... "How many gates are there here!!" I arrived there after 20 minutes walk. There were about 10 passengers and of course I was the only Japanese. I boarded a small green plane headed Ireland. I got more and more nervous. I thought that it was a little cold inside the airplane, and so I asked cabin staff for a blanket. But she said, "We don't have any blankets." So she turned up the heat instead. But now, a young man wearing a short-sleeved T-shirt who sat diagonally to the front of me looked like he was feeling hot...
We arrived at Dublin, the capitalcity of Ireland, in 2 hours. While I was asking cabin staff how to fill out an entry card, all the others had left the plane. I thanked the staff and entered the airport in a hurry. "There is nobody around...." I went through a passport control alone. "I feel so lonely...."

I got in a taxi and the driver looked like a younger Harrison Ford in 'The Fugitive'. The back ground music was U2 and so it made me laugh. I stayed in Dublin that night.

I went to Galway by train the next day. The train ran for about 30 minutes and on the way there were no buildings, only green hills.
I arrived at Galway in 3 hours from Dublin. It was at noon. I had heard that someone would pick me up at the station and I waited for them. But, nobody came.... After 30 minutes, I made a call to the my agent who had arranged my travel. I used a telephone card which they had given me for emergency use in advance. "I never thought I would need to use this....it is good to have this(ToT)" When I really became anxious, my hostmother Fiona came up to me! ....Did you happen to foget to pick me up today???

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