Kushiro to Tokyo

Beez Neez now Chy Whella
Big Bear and Pepe Millard
Tue 24 Oct 2017 22:27
Our Flight from Kushiro to Tokyo
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Who would believe it, yesterday we could take off but not get a connecting flight to Osaka, advised to stay put due to Typhoon Lan. We were not too displeased in the end as the the bus journey too and from the airport had the bus bobbling along in the wind and rain. Sitting at traffic lights we were positively rocking. After our trip, we went back to our digs and the ladies kindly let us return to our original room, we in turn told the cleaning lady we were all set which made her very pleased but she made us have new towels. We spent the day knocking out our upcoming trip to Myanmar and felt we had achieved this by bedtime. The only thing we will miss in Kyoto is a bimble up a mountain to see the snow monkeys and a view. I can live without either but I wish them well. Thank you, Bear just glad your train day was not missed then. Arrrr well. Indeed Sir........
This morning, what a difference, we climb on to the shuttle bus and do the five minutes to the bus station in brilliant sunshine. I nip in and buy our coach tickets for six pounds thirty two each and wait quietly at Stop 8. Bear waiting for the bus in just his tee shirt. On the fifty minute coach journey to the airport, a happy bunch who had, like us, been grounded.
We cross the river, way up on yesterday.
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Lovely cranes and owls wish us ‘farewell’ at the airport.
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Beautiful inset tiles as we approach the door, covered in alternating red and white cranes.
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Ground staff give us a bow and wave for ages, smiling and cheerful, efficient and beautifully presented.
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So, after our brief look at the Hokkaido Island we are returning to Tokyo en route to Osaka and onward to Kyoto.We trundle by the airport sign, all settled for our safety briefing on this 737-800.
Not been to many airports with scenery like this.
Oooo, thrilled to see these boys and their rescue chopper.
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We trundle on, the wind sock barely giving a flicker.
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Soon up in the air and heading for the ocean.
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Leaving Hokkaido behind.
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Bear loves the graphics, I love to look out at the blue.
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The teeny-weeny white smudge at the bottom of the first picture is indeed a chum when I zoom in.
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Nearing the coast of Honshu we see how an estuary dumps silt into the sea. Then volcanic scenery dotted with towns and roads.
In the distance, a snow-capped peak.
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I thought I was looking at posh housing estates with daintily placed trees for privacy, until I twigged they were golf courses, and there were loads of them.
A marina and back over the sea.
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I see a line like a pier, then what might be a chum loading jetty.
I zoom in and see cars. Bear looks it up for me.

Wiki says: The Tokyo Bay Aqua-Line (東京湾アクアライン), also known as the Trans-Tokyo Bay Highway, is a bridge–tunnel combination across Tokyo Bay. It connects the city of Kawasaki in Kanagawa Prefecture with the city of Kisarazu in Chiba Prefecture, and forms part of National Route 409. With an overall length of 14 kilometres, it includes a 4.4 kilometre bridge and 9.6 kilometre tunnel underneath the bay—the fourth-longest underwater tunnel in the world.

At the bridge–tunnel crossover point, there is an artificial island called Umihotaru (海ほたる Umi-hotaru, literally meaning "sea firefly") with a rest area consisting of restaurants, shops and amusement facilities. Air is supplied to the tunnel by a distinctive tower in the middle of the tunnel, called the Kaze no Tō (風の塔, "the tower of wind"), which uses the bay's almost-constant winds as a power source.

The road opened on the 18th of December 1997 after 23 years of planning and 9 years of construction at a cost of 1.44 trillion yen (11.2 billion USD at the time of opening).





The Tokyo Bay Aqua-Line reduced the drive between Chiba and Kanagawa, two important industrial regions, from 90 to 15 minutes, and also contributed to cutting the travel time to the sea leisure area in the southern part of the Bōsō Peninsula from Tokyo and Kanagawa. Before the tunnel opened, one had to drive around about 100 km along the shores of Tokyo Bay and pass through downtown Tokyo.

One goal expressed during the planning of the Aqua-Line was to reduce the traffic through downtown Tokyo, but as the highway toll is quite high, the reduction in Tokyo traffic has not been as great as expected. Bit of a wow.
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Next, I make out a tug-and-tow, more silt and a chum that looks like she is drawing a line behind her.
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Ooo a chum close too, then, within a trice we are on the ground. The first time in our lives we get off, walk to the terminal, sit down only to wait half an hour before we get back on the same plane a few rows further back............

When we flew in from KL we landed at Narita Airport, this time we landed at Haneda which (Wiki says:) handled 75,316,718 passengers in 2015; by passenger throughput, it was the third-busiest airport in Asia and the fifth-busiest in the world, after Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport, Beijing Capital International Airport (Asia's busiest), Dubai International Airport, and O'Hare International Airport. It is able to handle 90 million passengers per year following its expansion in 2010. With Haneda and Narita combined Tokyo has the third-busiest city airport system in the world, after London and New York City.





We look out over a very grey Tokyo but can just make out the Tokyo Skytree (in the centre of the picture).

                     BEAUTIFUL SUNNY DAY