Landing day. After a brutal 10 hour flight filled with movies, sleep, and airplane food, we landed in Istanbul, Turkey. The orangey-brown rooftops of the Byzantine buildings poked through the fog right before our plane’s wheels screeched into the ground. We were in Turkey. We stepped into the rainy air from the plane, the wind was surprisingly chilly and definitely broke some of my expectations of Istanbul, considering how my imagination expected Lawrence of Arabia, and not Singing in the Rain.
The airport is confusingly big, and it took us a long time to find our lounge. Luckily that gave us time to learn our way around a bit. After settling down in the lounge, Micah, Malaika, Gabby, and I decided to leave the lounge to go get food. We found a Popeye’s, but we were much more excited by who we ran into. We met Redfoo, one half of the electronic pop duo LMFAO. He was very kind and took pictures with us. The first day has definitely been eventful.
Today was my first international flight, and it was amazing! I only grabbed Gabby in moments of panic about three times. I imagined that I was flying, flying above the clouds and hundreds of places, millions of people. It was awesome. I made it, and I am so proud of myself.
My first traveling experience has been astounding so far. We landed to see the beautiful red roofs of the Istanbul coast. I have had an amazing time exploring the airport and comparing its cultural differences to Dulles Airport. Already this experience is triggering a sense to travel in me! As much as I want to explore Istanbul now, I can only expect to feel the same when we arrive in Japan tomorrow.
As our destination gets nearer and nearer, my excitement to get to Japan grows! I am really looking forward to exploring Japan with our TOMODACHI group and can’t wait to get here. I am nervous/excited about all the new things that I will be exposed to in Japan and will try to be as open to new experiences as I can. I am really thankful for this amazing opportunity and will try my hardest to get everything I can out of the trip. I am looking forward to meeting my host family, seeing my host sister once again and eating lots of ramen 🙂 I know that our entire TOMODACHI family will have an amazing experience and can’t wait to start our journey.
Today has been full of excitement and things I will never forget. I’m still in shock that I am on this amazing trip and that I’m in Istanbul, Turkey on my way to Japan. I tried Turkish ice cream served to me by a very entertaining man. Also, we met a member of the group known as LMFAO! This was such an amazing experience. This is also my first time staying in a lounge in an airport and the longest layover I’ve ever had to endure. I’m glad I could spend it with my other TOMODACHI. I can’t wait to make it to Japan and make more memories.