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CapAsia Reflections

Flight & Arrival in Asia

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The first country we visited was Indonesia and did I ever fall in love with the place! It took an amazing number of hours to fly there from the U.S.! First we flew from Newark to Chicago, then from Chicago to Hong Kong (we flew over the North Pole!), then to Singapore and I will say without hesitation that Changi Airport is the best airport I've ever seen in my life.


My daughter Emily at Changi Airport in Singapore.

Then we went to Medan, Indonesia which is a little regional airport. We spent a few hours there, non-a/c, immigration officers who were fascinated by my Arab surname in spite of me not being Arab, workers on the take wanting a tip, tax, or fee for various "services" provided, and the legendary squat toilets in the restroom. Most of us hadn't slept in two days and were only too happy to get on board the small plane to our temporary final destination of Banda Aceh, Indonesia.


Our first "class" at the Medan Airport, Indonesia. No rest for the weary.

We were greeted at the airport by our host and we caravanned to our temporary home, the Hermes Hotel. We were pleasantly surprised that it was a pretty swank place, but as was pointed out not much was left in Banda Aceh after the tsunami and this was one of the first places built. Most of us hit the sack for a couple of hours before convening for a tasty dinner under the stars at a little outdoor place that our host took us to. After that we slept what seemed like forever and then the adventure began....

Hermes Palace Hotel in Banda Aceh, Indonesia.
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