[on UAL 837, Narita to Seoul]


So… much… space…

So I managed to download all the earlier stuff onto my blog, thanks to an Internet terminal in the United lounge and an open USB port. I bought a little flash memory drive before I left, thinking it would come in handy. I had no idea. I grabbed the previous entries, moved them onto the drive, then carried it over to the desktop machine, plugged it in, and despite the opacity of Windows Kanji Edition, was up and running in a couple minutes. It’s not quite blogging in real time, but it’s sufficiently road warriorish to make me feel like a real man.

Plus, I managed to get onto Yahoo! Mail (thank you Yahoo!) and download my e-mail. Half of it turned out to be from the person I’m traveling with, but being able to keep in touch is still a nice feeling.

I remember when I would go to Brazil as a child, telephone calls to the U.S. were unheard of (at least for people in our class), and other communications like letters was infrequent. The ability to check your mail from across the Pacific is definitely one of those signs that you’re now living on a different planet.

Because we’re flying west, and took off in the late afternoon, this flight has an added advantage: a wonderfully long, drawn-out sunset, the kind that settles in over a soft blanket of clouds and tosses out every color between red and violet.

If business class was enough to inspire diabetic shock, first classwhich I’ve been moved up to for the Japan-Korea leg of the flightis just shocking. I’ll put up pictures later, but let me just try to describe it:

The cup holder is so far away I can’t reach my drink. That’s how much space you get.

There’s some kind of storage thing immediately in front of me that looks like a podium. I’m going to fly somewhere, and address the UN at the same time.

The seats have better controls than my car.

The seats have a better video system than my house.

They’re not first-class seats. Apparently they’re called “first-class suites.” Though I might have misheard.

Is this absurd, or what?