MERCATO. One of the places I look forward to going whenever I'm in Manila. Photo by James Annjo Salomon.
MERCATO. One of the places I look forward to going whenever I’m in Manila. Photo by James Annjo Salomon.

I only had a few hours of sleep today after having spent the night with my high school classmates. Mercato is always a favorite destination when we hang out here in the capital. I bloated myself with barbecue, and more barbecues. It was surely a fun night despite the lack of sleep.

ROOMIES. My roommates in Bayview Hotel, Abdul Rauf Bara and Norhalim Casim. Photo by Abdul Rauf Bara.
ROOMIES. My roommates in Bayview Hotel, Abdul Rauf Bara and Norhalim Casim. Photo by Abdul Rauf Bara.

Our wake up call time was 6 am thus having just almost 2 hours of sleep, waking up was such a pain in the arse, bed was like a magnet. Uh oh.

REMINDERS. National Youth Commission Commissioner Georg Nava giving out final reminders for the delegates. Photo by: James Annjo Salomon.
REMINDERS. National Youth Commission Commissioner Georg Nava giving out final reminders for the delegates. Photo by: James Annjo Salomon.

Lunch time came and I found myself sitting in the Gate 9 of Japan Airlines. If yesterday, it felt like I had reservations in joining, today was a different mood. Although I still have feelings of hesitation, at least I am now excited about Japan.

SEATMATES. During the flight, my seatmate was Kath Emphasis from MSU-IIT. Photo by: James Annjo Salomon.
SEATMATES. During the flight, my seatmate was Kath Emphasis from MSU-IIT. Photo by: James Annjo Salomon.

The flight going to Narita was relatively fine, except for some heavy turbulence that came our way when we were exiting the Philippines. As a first time traveler to Japan, I couldn’t help but be observant of things. Especially that we are in one of their flagship carriers, Japan Airlines, I could say that my first encounter of Japanese culture will be on this plane.

JAL’s crew surely had never failed in giving us a first glimpse on what a Japanese culture is all about. It’s a culture that surely goes beyond the individual differences of people and races.

COMPLETE MEAL. I surely enjoyed the complimentary meal served by Japan Airlines. Photo by: James Annjo Salomon.
COMPLETE MEAL. I surely enjoyed the complimentary meal served by Japan Airlines. Photo by: James Annjo Salomon.

What I liked the most about our trip to Narita was the meal part. (HAHAHAHA Obviously.) It was such a great meal. The best part of that “best part” was the Haagen Dazs Ice Cream. Okay, enough said.

TOUCHDOWN NARITA! Finally, my first glimpse of Japan. Photo by: James Annjo Salomon
TOUCHDOWN NARITA! Finally, my first glimpse of Japan. Photo by: James Annjo Salomon

It was around 7 pm when we arrived in Narita. Although the immigration officer assigned to me displayed a smug face, I didn’t let that cut short my excitement. “Japan is very clean”, was the first thing I told myself while we were going out of the Narita Airport. I didn’t have much time to roam around the airport as we were trying to run against time to check-in in Hotel Nikko Narita  nevertheless, it made me even more excited about the coming days.

To cap my day, I plunged into a hot bath and went to sleep.

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