Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Blogger blocked in China

Ni Hao from Xining! Our apologies for the lack of communication since the Tokyo airport. We did arrive safely in Beijing and are having a fabulous adventure thus far! After much frustration initially with spotty internet access and inability to access the blog, we finally realized that our blog has actually been blocked by the Chinese government. We cannot access it at all, nor can we publish any new posts (without the help of someone in the states, shout out to Dell). We are keeping detailed notes along the way, though, and taking tons of photos, so get ready for a big "China" post after we leave the country (approx 2 weeks from now). Then we will hopefully resume regular posting thereafter.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

En Route to Beijing

Greetings from Tokyo! It has been a LONG journey, and we still have one more flight to go, but we're almost there! Here is a picture of us leaving the Atlanta airport on May 10th. Our backpacks are in their nifty duffle bags, which will double as rain covers on the trip. 

A few highlights/funny moments of the journey thus far: our last and final meal in the U.S. was McDonalds -- the only place open in LAX at 1am... painful!!! We got 45 min of sleep on the 10th on the airport floor, and in total we have slept 5 hours since the night of the 9th (running on fumes needless to say). We had a scare in the Portland airport -- needed proof of departure from China in order to board the international flight, which we did not have (we had researched this and knew it was not a requirement for entry into China -- turns out it is a Delta requirement)... an enormous thanks to Addie Walters at Brownell Travel for completely saving us!  We were allowed on the flight, and were so fortunate as to have reclining exit row seats with tons of leg room on a 2-seat side of the plane for our long 10.5 hour flight over the Pacific! And now, we are enjoying some delicious Japanese fare in the airport as we await our final flight.  Below is a picture of us shortly after our arrival in Tokyo (looking a bit rough).  It is sad being in Japan, reflecting on all of the recent devastation, and selfishly wishing that we could have spent time here.

Update on our ever-changing itinerary for those with whom we haven't spoken: we are spending the entire 4 months in Asia!  So much for our "round the world" tickets and the months of research... we cancelled it all two days ago and plan to explore mainland and SE Asia.  Currently our list of countries includes China, Nepal, India, Cambodia, Vietnam, Bali.  More details to come once we have them. All we have set is a hostel booked for 2 nights in Beijing... and we have a room with internet access, so hopefully we can recover from jet-lag and get to work planning this trip!