Starting My Asian Adventure

Starting My Asian Adventure December 1, 2014 · 3 min. readThis article may contain affiliate links.

The flight from Regina to Osaka was both incredibly boring, and incredibly interesting.

I sat with three different women from three different walks of life, on the three planes I took to get there. The first was a new mother, who was heading to Newfoundland for her sister's wedding. Her daughter was only a few months old, and didn't cry until we began to land in Toronto. The second woman was an American who was heading to meet up with her boyfriend in Kyoto during a confrence regarding heat transfer in skyscrapers and urban cities. The third was an old, tired woman, who has seen many things, and learned many more, but just longed to return home to Osaka to rest.

Besides the company, the flights themselves were very plain. I traveled from Regina to Toronto, Toronto to Tokyo and Tokyo to Osaka. We flew North from Toronto, up above Churchill, past Yellowknife, Whitehorse and Alaska. It was here I saw hundreds of miles of ice sheets covering the north Pacific Ocean -- although it was the middle of August! We then flew over the tail of Russia and down into Japan.

I have never flown across the International Dateline before, but I left Toronto at 10 AM Saturday morning, and flew in direct sunlight for 14 hours, only to land over 24 hours later at 2pm Sunday afternoon.

It was in the Tokyo airport I first witnessed Japanese culutre firsthand. TVs dotted the terminals, all showing fast, bright ads of anime, baseball, women and sketchy healthing promiting products. And the rumours are true: therereally is a Pokemon themed airplane!

My plane was delayed for a half hour due to a typhoon hitting Osaka, so I used the tablet (thanks mom!) to call home and talk to my girlfriend.

I arrived in Osaka and took the Airport Limousine (shuttle bus) to Namba Station. I then spent a very long 90 minutes in a hot, damp, vibrant city getting more and more lost among the skyscrapers and flashing lights. Only after I stopped at a 7-11 and asked for help did I get directions to my hotel from a man who spoke next to no English, but thankfully had a iPhone that could.

Upon my wet, tried, jet lagged arrival, I was informed I would be in a single room the first night I was in Osaka, and then a double room the next night when I joined my roommate. It didn't matter much to me, so I washed up, relaxed and went to bed. I was exhausted and my trip to Japan had only just begun!


And, as always, a big thank you to my sweetheart Jessica Nuttall for proof reading a countless number of my articles. I couldn't do any of this without you. I love you.

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Starting My Asian Adventure

The flight from Regina to Osaka was both incredibly boring, and incredibly interesting.

I sat with three different women from three different walks of life, on the three planes I took to get there. The first was a new mother, who was heading to Newfoundland for her sister's wedding. Her daughter was only a few months old, and didn't cry until we began to land in Toronto. The second woman was an American who was heading to meet up with her boyfriend in Kyoto during a confrence regarding heat transfer in skyscrapers and urban cities. The third was an old, tired woman, who has seen many things, and learned many more, but just longed to return home to Osaka to rest.

Besides the company, the flights themselves were very plain. I traveled from Regina to Toronto, Toronto to Tokyo and Tokyo to Osaka. We flew North from Toronto, up above Churchill, past Yellowknife, Whitehorse and Alaska. It was here I saw hundreds of miles of ice sheets covering the north Pacific Ocean -- although it was the middle of August! We then flew over the tail of Russia and down into Japan.

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I met the bride, Mari, in Japan several years ago. Since I've met many people in my travels I've never seen again, I assumed the Facebook wedding invitation I received must have been by accident. A quick email later and I realised it was in fact deliberate. Since it's not every day one gets invited to a wedding in a different country, especially a tropical country in the dead of winter, I said yes.

I also learned that another friend I had met in Japan, Katarina, would be coming to the wedding too. Katarina is from Australia, so she did a trip through the United States before the wedding. It was great to catch up over the years and swap stories about our travels since Japan.

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A few weeks ago I was able to experience what it was like to be a cowboy at the Medicine Hat Stampede and Exhibition chuck wagon races. While many think of the Wild West as being a world away, you can find plenty of chuck wagon racing, barrel racing and horse competitions just a few hours west of Regina. Although I only spent one night at the races, I still met The Medicine Hat Rodeo Queen and Princess, could pet some horses, caught chuck wagon racing and made some new friends.

One of the best things about the Medicine Hat Exhibition and Stampede is the welcoming atmosphere surrounding it. Upon arriving, I knew nothing about chuck wagons and horses, so I walked up to one of the 5,000 tireless volunteers and just asked. From there I hit the tracks and saw the races for myself – although I may have gotten a little too close.

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