April 10th --Back to California!--

It is 16:20, JST. Now I am in a lounge of KIX, waiting for boarding. Today will be a long day. I know it. I have experienced it many times. Here in Osaka, it is raining a little bit, no problem for the flight but some problem for cherry trees full of beautiful flowers. I hope to see a clear sky and green trees in Stanford.

The airplane left KIX on time and now I am flying over the Pacific Ocean. It is 9:45, Pacific time. We will be in SFO in a couple of hours. The flight was not so good. Because of the rain in Osaka, we had a severe turbulence, which turned the airplane into a huge rodeo. And even on the Pacific Ocean, we sometimes had a shake. I think I slept well, well enough to start preparing for this journey. I hope I can recover from a jet lag soon.

It is 13:48, Pacific Time. I am at the Millbrae Station, waiting for a CalTrain to Menlo Park. Strangely, a shuttle bus to the station came between the trains, so I have about 50 minutes to the next train. The aircraft made a perfect landing under a clear sky of California. I really love this dry air, bright sunshine, and the wide highway of the US-101. One big challenge of this trip is to drive all along the US-101, from Seattle to Los Angeles, although the leg is broken into two parts at Stanford. I rented a cell phone at the airport, which would be a great help in case. It cost $350 minimum. This is not cheap but I need some kind of insurance on my journey. I hope my Jeep is young enough to run more than 12,000 miles.

At last, I reached Thorsten's house. I felt a little bit tired, so I fell asleep. When I woke up, I felt my body temperature low. This is a typical jet lag. I need to remove it before I start --- it seems tomorrow. I made a phone call to Larry, a flight instructor, to make an appointment. This small excitement woke me up. Later, Thorsten took me to Sophia's house. Oh, she was at home. And so was Benoit, her husband. She is one of the greatest supporters of this trip and played an important role at the turning point of my life. She kindly kept my Cherokee for about three months! Without her help, this trip would be much harder, getting a position in US would be much harder. She gave me a bunch of lavender, which she grows in front of her house. I put it in the car so that a good fortune may be with me. Finally, I got a power here in US. Being without a car here is really powerless. My Cherokee works well. Tomorrow, she needs an oil change. Thorsten and Tonia served me a great BBQ. I felt US again from the size of the meat. Now I have an enough energy to start my journey.

Tonia Stengelin

The UA809 in rain

The Golden Gate Bridge

The CalTrain

Sophia and Benoit

Thorsten Hesjedal

next day

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