First day: quite long and enduring. My flight was due to take off at 0705 from the Minneapolis-St Paul air port. My parents picked me up at 0430 from my grandparents house in Woodbury to be sure to get me to the air port at least an hour and half before it would take off. The fog en-golfed us as we cruised down the road. Tears stung my eyes as I tried to hold the sadness in. It was hard to imagine what 2 years in Japan was going to be like and the effect of leaving my family and childhood friends behind was depressing. My Dad and Macy pulled up to the curve where the Delta sign hung. Before I knew it, my parents drove off. Who knows when I’d see them again and would I be the same when we finally do reunite? There was no time for thinking, I had a mission to accomplish and that was to hall all my luggages to the check-in area. 2 large bags and 3 backpacks are quite difficult to manage all on your own! Finally, at 0705 I was on the plane although, due to winter conditions, the plane was delayed a whole hour! As I sat in the air plane a teenager from Minnesota sitting next to me engaged me in conversation. He seemed to have the typical kind-hearted Scandinavian personality and was really talkative throughout the entire flight. He was so enthusiastic that I couldn’t even get a breath in. I didn’t mind so much; he made all the effort to keep the conversation going and I was just sitting listening and silently resting. We finally touched down at the air port after 3 long hours and went straight to the USO. The focus of the United Service Organizations Inc. is to lift the spirits of troops and their families through nonprofit programs throughout the world in 160 locations. In a sense the USO is considered “a home away from home” since 1941 and is completely run on donations and volunteers. I love going to the USO. They are specifically made for military members, whether retired or not. This USO had food, drinks, a TV, computers, a shower, and bunks at our disposal. I flashed my CAC card (military ID) to gain entrance and from there everything went smoothly. Most of my time was spent on my computer contacting friends and family back home. After a few hours of sitting I got antsy, so I decided to look around the air port. There was not much to see...I decided to do something adventurous and took a shuttle away from the air port. There was nothing much else to see either! All I wanted to do was kill time since my next plane to Japan wasn’t until the next day. The sun started to set and I came back to the USO to take a nice hot shower and went to sleep in one of the many bunks available. Unfortunately, a 4 hour limit was set on the bunks to allow others to sleep as well. The USO personnel woke me up after about 3 1/2 hours of sleep, then I grabbed my luggage to walk to the check-in area. The line seemed pretty long, but didn’t seem bad at first...well it was REALLY bad. I walked behind the person who i thought was at the end of the line before someone behind me said that the end started all the way down the hall. It was inconceivable! It only took a few minutes before I became bored once I was at the end of the real line. While waiting the 3 hours in line I made conversation with the people around me. A guy who worked at the air port addressed everyone in line and assessed how many bags they had. He finally came to me and told me straight up that if I wanted to keep 5 bags then I’d have to pay $150 to check in the extra 3rd bag (2 could be considered carry on). That was not about to fly with me! Within 15 minutes I managed to disperse my stuff from one bag to the other 4. The bags were so stuff they looked like they were going to burst open! Time was still dragging on after I checked in the bag. Breakfast was on my mind so I left to look for a Dennies. It was only a few blocks from the air port, yet the freezing air and fog made it quite a treacherous journey. Actually, I was lost a bit until miraculously the Dennis restaurant revealed itself. My server was amazingly energetic for 4 a.m. He was an older man who was full of jokes and even carried around a ridiculously large pen about the size of ketchup bottle. It was still a little early for me, so I stuck to getting a delicious strawberry banana smoothie. It was about time to go back since the plane was due to take off at 0730. Once I hit security I started to get nervous because I was cutting it close! Luckily, a special line was separate for military members which got me through quickly. 15 minutes after I arrived at the gate the air line personnel allowed people to start lining up and filter onto the huge plane. Each row had 7 seats; 2 seats sat next to each window and 3 seats stood in the middle between the two aisles. My ticket gave me an aisle seat on the left side of one of the 3 seats in the middle (although window seat is best for a view and for resting your head on when you get sleepy). Movies played on the flat screen ahead. I paid it no mind since sleep was what got the best of me for the first 3-4 hours. Throughout the 10 hour flight I drifted in and out of sleep. Only first class seats are somewhat comfortable while coach has stiff seats, making it tricky to get some real rest. Every hour I had to get up, stretch, and walk around. The flight attendants were hospitable and offered breakfast and lunch. A suggestion for those who plan to take a long plane ride, NEVER eat the food they offer; You will surly die of food poisoning. Of course I am probably over exaggerating, however, it was still sketchy. The whole time I was just counting down the hours and minutes until my arrival in Misawa, Japan; my first duty station with the Air Force.