Day 3

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Saturday, May 22

As Advertised: Upon arrival in Osaka, site of the 95th annual Rotary International Convention, you will be met and transferred to your convention hotel where your registration materials await you. The remainder of the day is yours to get acclimated.

This day effectively vanished in the crossing of the International Date Line. We had gotten up about 6:30 a.m. Friday in San Francisco and boarded the plane before noon. When we reached Osaka, about 4:30 p.m. on Saturday, it was after midnight (Friday) San Francisco time and 2:30 a.m. Mobile time.

We had been shown a video on Kansai International Airport (KIX) while still on the plane, but it was hardly necessary, as we just followed the flow of traffic through passport control and baggage claim and out to “The Canyon,” where not only Hamden representatives but also Glenn awaited us. When all the bags and passengers had been assembled, we were herded onto buses, one or more for each hotel. Our party (including Glenn) finally arrived at the Hilton about 7:30 p.m., desperately tired. “The remainder of the day” was rather a joke.

In the Hilton lobby we found packets containing both official R.I. materials (convention badges, programs, coupons for goodie bags, etc.) and our room keys and meal tickets, and after sorting those out, we retired to our rooms. Our bags didn’t arrive for quite some time (Hamden delivered them promptly, but they had to await the convenience of the Hilton bellmen). After they finally showed up, I called for an iron and ironing board. The latter was merely inadequate, but the former was totally mysterious, the first of many unsatisfactory ironing combinations I experienced (when they were available at all).

We finally got to bed about 9:30 p.m. and slept fitfully till 5 a.m.