From Miyajima we took the ferry back to the mainland and train back to Hiroshima where we waited for our bullet train to Tokyo. It arrived on time and we boarded for the 554 mile journey back to Tokyo which was suppose to take 4 hours and thirty seven minutes. We would arrive just about midnight in plenty of time to get a good nights rest or so we thought.

It seems as though while we were enjoying the sights of Hiroshima and Miyajima the snow storm that we left in Osaka was still wreaking havoc on the railroads. We were several hours late arriving in Tokyo, but no one cared. That is until we went outside to catch a cab back to the hotel. Tokyo was hit with over six inches of snow and, from what I gathered, they are not to well equipped or accustomed to snow. The line for taxis was horrendous and it took us quite some time to get back to our hotel, but we finally made it.

We thoroughly enjoyed Japan, but we found it to be outrageously expensive when we visited. This was not a surprise to us as we were well advised and expected it to be expensive. The funny thing is that, in Tokyo, we stayed at the New Otani Hotel for free courtesy of the Marriott Hotel Frequent Traveler program. We had the room for five nights and only spent two nights there. Just out of curiosity when we checked out I asked what the going rate was for the hotel. I was shocked when they informed me it was US$500 per night. The room was nice with a king-size bed and bath, but it was not large by any standards. I'm glad I wasn't paying cold, hard cash for it!

The next morning we arose and packed for the journey home. We arrived at the airport in plenty of time for our flight only to find that the flight was delayed for three hours. Now I knew I was in trouble. We always plan our vacations to get the maximum amount of time out of the available time. If our flight was on time we would have had a two hour connection in Los Angeles and gotten into Newark International Airport about midnight. In plenty of time to get home, get some rest and be at work the next morning. With my flight being delayed out of Tokyo I was sure I would miss the connection in Los Angeles. I was in for a bit of a surprise.
The surprise was that our flight into Los Angeles was delayed because of problems in Los Angeles caused by a snowstorm that hit the east coast the day before. We were delayed getting into Los Angeles and our flight would be waiting for us when we arrived. We were late, but we made it home. And, more importantly, I made it to work right on time the next day.

This was an absolutely wonderful trip. While we didn't have time to explore all of the nooks and crannies of the places we visited we had plenty of time to enjoy the country and see some of the main sights. I would recommend this for anyone. We are already beginning to plan another trip to Japan. This time when the trees and flowers are in full bloom. It must be absolutely breathtaking.

Thank you for enjoying our vacation album from southeast Asia. We hope to see you again soon.
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Getting There
Singapore -- Orchard Road | Chinatown | Merlion Park | Arab Town and Indian District | Tang Dynasty City | Singapore Zoo | Mandai Orchid Garden | Sentosa Island
Hong Kong -- Hong Kong Island | Hong Kong at Night and the New Territories | Kat Hing Wai and Lok Ma Chau | Kowloon | Causeway Bay
Macau -- Monte Hill and St. Paul's | A-Ma Temple and Lou Lem Ioc Garden
People's Republic of China -- The Border and Farming Village | Lunch and the Ox | Dr. Sun Yat-Sen's Home | Chinese Market
Bangkok -- The City and Weekend Market | The Grand Palace | Grand Palace (Emerald Buddha) | Grand Palace (Dusit Group) | Ayutthaya (Reclining Buddha) | Ayutthaya (Ruins) | Bang-Pa-In Palace | Chao Phraya River
Phuket -- The Hotel and Popeye | Phuket Island | The Beaches and Local Wat | Promthep Cape
Japan -- Tokyo | Niko & Toshogu Shrine | Osaka & Kyoto | Visiting Friends | Nara | Hiroshima & Miyajima | Going Home

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