I’ve never been accused of being a math wiz. I made it through Algebra 1 and Geometry 1 in high school with acceptable grades, but I didn’t ever enjoy it.
There is one kind of math that I do with some regularity, though. It relates to time zones and travel. It’s a kind of self-torture that is not all that uncommon amongst travelers. So, as I sit in Detroit, about 5 hours from being home and 5:10 hours from being in my own bed, I’m doing travel math.
I woke up in Chiang Mai, Thailand on Sunday morning at 6 am. (That was 7 pm Saturday in the Eastern timezone.)
I boarded a plane with a departure time of 11:50 pm Sunday. (That was 12:50 pm Sunday at home.) It was also 18 hours after I’d climbed out of bed. That flight from Chiang Mai to Incheon (the International airport just outside of Seoul) took about 4 hours and I dozed on and off from my window seat. My best estimate is that I got 90 minutes of sleep.
Arrival time in Korea was 7 am Monday. (That was 5 am Chiang Mai (CNX) time and 6 pm Sunday in Orlando (MCO).)
My layover at the Incheon airport was a long one. I kept busy with all sorts of things, including at attempted nap that I think netted me all of 30 minutes of sleep.
The Incheon to Detroit flight left Korea at 6:45 pm Monday locally (4:45 CNX/5:45am MCO). Thankfully — having been up for 24 hours by this point with about 2 hours of sleep (no stretch of sleep lasting longer than 20-30 minutes) — I was upgraded on this flight. So, after the meal I stretched out and pulled the blanket over my head and went to sleep. My best estimation is that I spent 5 of my 11 hours on that flight sleeping.
We landed in Detroit at 6:45 pm Monday. Yes, we landed at the same time on the same day as we left Korea. This is my favorite travel math. 6:45 pm Sunday here is 5:45 am on Tuesday in Thailand — so it marks the “48 hours since I got out of bed” point. While 7 hours of sleep in 48 is not anywhere close to optimal, it is WAY better than I anticipated getting at this point. I don’t sleep well sitting up in a plane seat.
I’ve been here for a while and in one more hour should be taking off for a not-quite three-hour flight to Orlando. With a checked bag and the short drive home, I should be in bed before midnight.
If you’ll let me call 11:50 pm Sunday “almost Monday — it means that I had a really really really long Monday, April 15 that started in Thailand, included Korea, and lasted 35 hours. My Monday had two sunrises and sunsets. It included 3 flights.