Hello Kitty, Goodbye Hong Kong!

Hello kitty flight! Oh this is going to be fun. Sure our flight got delayed by 3 hours, but at least we’re re-booked on a Hello Kitty flight! All of the attendants are insanely cute, with little Hello Kitty lapels. We get on the flight and the first thing we notice, the only thing you can notice, is that everything… everything has been Hello Kitty’d! The pillow covers, the welcome monitors, the safety instructions, headphones, shopping air mall, right down to the barf bags…

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Cutest fucking barf bags I ever saw. There was a card in the seat pouch describing all of the Hello Kitty planes. I couldn’t really figure out which one we were actually on though. Maybe the Hello Kitty Speed Puff?. I kind of wish it was ‘Hello Kitty Loves Apples’.

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Part way through the flight Queenie goes to the bathroom. She comes back giggling. Her hand is wrapped in Hello Kitty toilet paper. “Everything Hello Kitty!” Alright I’m going to check it out. Yep. The bathrooms have Hello kitty toilet paper, paper towel, hand sanitizer, and a wonderful collection of Hello Kitty scented hand soaps.

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Even though we’re just hopping over to Taipei again for a connecting flight, they still serve us a meal. Aaaaaand of course the place-mat, cutlery, napkin, tooth picks, nuts, water, and everything is Hello Kitty as well.

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With about an hour to land in Taipei an attendant comes by and invites us up to first class. Whaaaa? They’ve been holding our flight in Taipei this whole time and they want us to be the first ones off the plane. Damn! They’ve been holding the Taipei flight for 3 hours?

They lead us up front and let us sit in some open seats. Ahhhhhh so much space, finally a seat I fit in. And massive Hello Kitty pillows!

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It’s a rough flight into Taipei. There’s a huge thunderstorm going on, the reason for the delay in the first place. Rain, thunder and lightning. The plane is rattling around freaking out the kids. And the adults. But we touch down just fine and, as promised, we were the first ones off the flight.

We deplane in the middle of the night and the Taipei airport seems deserted. On the way out of the gate an attendant slaps a sticker on each of our shoulders. At every twist and turn of the airport there is someone there to check for this sticker and usher us down the hall to the next person. “Hurry! hurry!” they say politely. It felt like we were in some sort of airport relay race.

We got pushed through security super fast too. Agent Getz looking hilarious rushing away while holding his pants up with one hand and his belt, ear phones, money and phone all awkwardly in the other hand. A fleet of staff were on the other side to coordinate the rest of our path to the held flight. This was the fastest I’ve ever been off and back on another plane.

It was a bumpy flight out of Taiwan as well. The thunder and lightning kept rolling as if the travel gods were mad that we would even consider leaving. We’ll be back! Each of us were in and out of sleep on the 14 hours back. I finished off Beautiful You. Decent. Not his best, not his worst. Made me laugh out loud several times, so that’s definitely worth the jaunt. I might know more about sex? Maybe not.

We get back to LAX almost 4 hours later than we were expecting to. We missed the last train back. We decide the best option may just be to rent a car and drop it off back in Redlands. Off to Hertz!

“The only car we have available is a convertible Mustang”, “How? how can that be your only option?”, “I’m sorry, it just is. To rent it and drop it off in Redlands will cost 140 dollars.” We exchange looks of desperation. “Fuck it, we’re exhausted. Let me guess, it’s red”, “Yes actually it is.”

We pile our exhausted bones into the new car smell of a fresh, red convertible mustang. Agent Getz and Tha Queebs conk out in their seats while I zig-blast through the traffic on the I-10. The sobering proximity of impending reality is at my heels. I’ll need more than this rental mustang to outrace it. It’s that sadness that kicks in at the end of a good trip when you know it’s over and what follows is just real life. This things got some pep though. I’m gunning it. Might as well get my money’s worth, but really I just want to get back to pillow mountain and sleep for the next year and a half.

Get back to Redlands and part ways with sleepy Agent Getz. Our next adventure with McBurger is already formulating. Tha Queebs and I give a formal report of our findings in Taiwan and Hong Kong to Dr. Birdrito. We think he is pleased (it’s hard to tell). We are then escorted by a flock of winged lamas to the peak of Pillow Mountain.

It was an amazing trip! We toured the whole island of Taiwan and a good chunk of Hong Kong too. Saw some amazing sights, man made and natural, met some great people, ate some of the strangest shit in my life, and had a few glorious piss-ups.

And while we did a lot of awesome stuff, had great food, and saw some gorgeous sights, I’ve got to say that the Taiwanese people themselves were truly the best part of the trip. Unbelievably kind, honest, genuine, hospitable, helpful, as well as fun, cute, hilarious, super friendly, and with big appetites to match their big hearts. My hat is off to that culture, I will definitely be returning there.

– Diesel Out

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