Thursday, August 21, 2014

Wandering the Netherlands

Last week I headed to the airport again. This time there was even more travel involved than usual since I had to head down to Osaka to fly out of Kansai International Airport. So it was bus to Tokyo, 'shinkansen' (bullet train) to Shin-Osaka, train to KIX. Since the flight was an early morning flight I had to book a hotel and travel to Osaka a day in advance. I met up early the next morning with the 3 dogs I was transporting to Europe, and though there was a little drama regarding the export paperwork, everything worked out in the end.

I arrived in Germany, handed one dog over to its owners, and then had some coffee with some childhood friends at the airport. They just happened to be flying into Frankfurt on the same day, and it was nice to catch up. A few hours later my ride to the Netherlands arrived, and with two dogs in tow we began speeding through the night on the Autobahn. We arrived late, stayed up a bit chatting with friends, and then slept for a few hours. In the morning we walked all the dogs, and headed to Amsterdam to see the sights.

I really liked the atmosphere and the city, everything down to the loads of young weekend tourists, street musicians, canals, deadly bicycle riders, crooked houses, and coffee shops. Yes, we even went to take a look at the red light district which I found not overly exciting, but surreal.

The next day we were all off to the NIPPO Show Holland 2014 where I was translating and helping Mr.Iwasa judge the Shiba, Shikoku, Kishu, Kai, and Hokkaido. I'll post about that later. The next morning we were off early again to head back to Frankfurt for the return trip. I had a bit of luck at the airport. When I arrived at check in, airline staff informed me they were overbooked and I didn't have a seat. For a moment the tired human in me wanted to get a little pissy about it, but I chucked on the headphones and chilled out. These things happen. A few minutes later staff approached me and said they could get me on a later flight to Tokyo AND give me a 600 euro voucher. Of course they had no idea I wanted to get to Tokyo anyway, so it all worked out perfectly. Fantastic luck if I may say so!

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