Kevin Standlee (kevin_standlee) wrote,
Kevin Standlee
kevin_standlee

Getting There is Nearly All of the Fun

I do appreciate advice from people who have figured out more about travel in Japan than me, particularly if they have hands-on experience with a system whose documentation is sometimes a little, er, inscrutable. But anyone who offers advice that amounts to "why don't you fly" has completely missed the point of traveling for the experience.

If the only way to get up to the north of Japan was by flying there, we'd go someplace else. We bought a pair of 21-day first-class rail passes, and intend to travel by train as much as we possibly can on them. And we enjoy traveling by train, whereas airline flights are tortures to be endured. My wife seriously considered and priced booking a passenger berth on a container ship rather than having to submit herself to the doubtful pleasures of transpacific air travel, even in business class. (Lisa, I should point out, doesn't dislike flying; she at one time logged something like 120 hours of flight time studying for a pilot's license. She detests airports, along with "security theatre" and the modern commercial air travel "experience.")

I don't fly places because I want to fly; I do so because I don't have enough time to get there by other means. If I could afford the extra day of travel time each way, I'd take the Coast Starlight, delays and all, between the Bay Area and Oregon, instead of flying.
Tags: japan, trains, travel
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