Cell service for travel to Asia

So I have a trip coming up where I will spend a couple of weeks in Japan and Indonesia. I have Verizon Wireless service in the U.S., and I am generally pretty happy with it– the network is much better than Sprint and T-Mobile for the places I am likely to be, somewhat better than AT&T here in the Petroplex, and the rates are competitive with AT&T. I also get an employer discount which is helpful. Verizon also has international travel options which work pretty well in most of the world. While a $10 a day charge is sometimes criticized as too expensive, it is awfully convenient and probably the best way to handle a reasonably short trip. Continue reading “Cell service for travel to Asia”

Volcano Restaurant in Odessa

Volcano (formerly Wokcano) is my go-to spot for sushi in the Petroplex. I normally go to the location on 42nd Street in Odessa, although there is now a Midland branch as well. I ate there today with the Mrs. and another couple, and as always the entrees were spot on. Continue reading “Volcano Restaurant in Odessa”

Pre-order the Japanese meal on American Airlines business class to Tokyo

Howdy, folks. Many of you already know that if you have a business or first class ticket on American Airlines— or if you get upgraded at least 24 hours in advance– you can log in and select your meals. That is a fun option for those of us who like to anticipate trips, and it is a necessary one for folks who have religious or dietary restrictions. My purpose here is to briefly review how to do that for anyone who doesn’t already know. Second, I want to let everybody know what the business class menu choices are on flight AA 175 from DFW to NRT. Continue reading “Pre-order the Japanese meal on American Airlines business class to Tokyo”

Boudin balls at The Lost Cajun

The Lost Cajun on Highway 191 in Odessa is an excellent spot for lunch. They have a copy of their menu available online if you care to check it out. There are a lot of things this place does well, and one of them is lunch specials. While I did not think to take a picture of the full menu (I had the hangries and felt the need to order quickly), I did have the presence of mind to snap a photo of the lunch specials and appetizers from the menu cards on our table. Continue reading “Boudin balls at The Lost Cajun”

Buying foreign currency for a trip to Indonesia and Japan

Howdy, folks. I have a trip in December to Tokyo, Jakarta, and Bali, and this is the point in a big trip when I start to plan out some of the small details– how will my cell phone work, how will I buy stuff, etc. Happily, both Japan and Indonesia and pretty credit card friendly (in theory, anyway). However, I don’t like to go places without at least a little bit of cash to get me started. The exchange rates aren’t great, although Bank of America had a much better deal than did, say, Travelex. With Bank of America, you do have to have an existing checking or savings account. It is worth checking with your bank to see what sort of exchange rate they will offer you. I got about $200 worth of each currency so I would have something as soon as I land. Continue reading “Buying foreign currency for a trip to Indonesia and Japan”