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Written on: Friday November 30th, 2007

A journal entry from: ASIA PART II

6:51 a.m. GMT aboard Cathay Pacific CX847

Can't seem to settle regardless of my extraordinary lack of much needed sleep. It's an icy -59`C at a cruising altitude of 35000 ft and I'm chilled right down to the bone. After several requests, I was finally given another blanket and fortunately one that actually covers right down to my toes. The personal viewing screen in the seat in front of me continues to keep me updated as to our exact location with an ETA. We have fast-forwarded a day, as we cross the international date line and are approaching the Sea of Okhotsk just underneath Siberia. With the calculated countdown now at 7hr and 41min - this Asian bound flight is literally taking an eternity and a day.

The passengers onboard flight CX847 apparently do not sleep - a third of them en route to India and the remainder fall into the Balikbayan category. It's a fragrant, sold-out flight and Gigi, the flight attendant, was already less-than-impressed even before takeoff. There are many irritable children and unruly elders that continue to pace up and down the aisle, with no regard to the fasten seatbelt sign, or heck, even to the food/beverage cart that they assume will move out of the way for them. My seat is towards the rear of the plane and this allows me to take note of all the multi-colored turbans that dot the rows; it's the perfect spot to people watch and admire the vibrant colors from afar. So you see, sleep is not an option for myself. Thankfully, my neighbor also finds the humor in our disruptive surroundings. I've tried to drown out my disorganized thoughts with a combination of the inflight audio, otherwise known as, "first-class crooning" and John's massive music compilation. With extreme effort and after endless times of repositioning, my attempts to drift off into a superficial slumber have failed.

I have so much to be thankful for and I am reminded of how lucky I am as I embark on this six month journey. I am blessed with such wonderful people in my life and I am truly fortunate to be able to call you my friends and family. Without your ongoing support, I literally wouldn't be where I am. Brea, I'm sad to report that your strategic packing was overrun by the airline baggage weight limit - thirteen pounds over. Looks like I'm breaking in my new backpack sooner than I anticipated. It was quite the fiasco prior to boarding, as the folks had to redistribute all things that had been packed - apparently hard lessons that will have to be learned over and over again. I will miss each and everyone of you immensely and I want you all to know how much I cherish your friendships. All my appreciation simply cannot be put into words and my heart will forever be grateful. I look forward to reuniting in the summer and sharing the tales of this adventure. Until then, regular online updates will have to suffice, so please, please keep in touch. Seven hours into the flight and my legs have started to throb, perhaps I should take a stroll/stretch and visit the parentals up at the front. Thank goodness for the weekend... Always take care and have a beautiful night. Sending all my love and well wishes!