Saturday, March 29, 2008

R.I.P. Orientation

Got through orientation. It was boring. On the plus side, it seems like most of the new students are decent enough. In fact, my new roommate is the only other iaidoka here... and his sensei back in the States set him up with the same iaido club I'm with in Urayasu... how's that for a coincidence?
On that note, Joey, I will probably be heading to the sword shop sometime this week, so please respond to my last email ASAP (if anyone could let him know, that'd be great, as I'm trying to cut down on my transit costs ^_^; )

Saturday, March 22, 2008

On the topic of general bullshit...

So, I had planned a small (around 6-person) pre-semester pizza party. I checked with my landlady to make sure it'd be okay, and adjusted the time to be somewhat earlier for her convenience. Then, less than 48 hours before the party is supposed to happen, she comes in and tells me that the IES housing director said that the party is canceled. She proceeds to lecture me for about an hour in Japanese about how I have to be an example to the new students who'll be moving in in a few days, because one of them is such a problem child, blah blah blah... well, the one she was referring to is someone who my landlady hasn't even met, but apparently the IES housing director told her all sorts of horror stories about him. Well, I happen to know the guy. He has lots of piercings and several tattoos, but he's a perfectly decent fellow.
Later that evening, I received an email from the IES housing director, basically filled with Japanese-style quasi-threats about how they may have to 'be stricter' with the rules in Endo-ryo in the future. Now, anyone who knows me knows that threatening me is not a good way to get positive results. In fact, it's a damned good way to make me into your enemy, particularly when you don't have the guts to do so in a direct manner. Due to these proceedings, I may have to revise my opinion of the on-site IES staff being decent people who try and help the students out. After I politely tolerated it being implied that there was indeed some sort of Jewish conspiracy for world domination at a speech I did as a favor for the IES housing director, this sort of back-stabbing seems to be an awfully poor way of repaying said favor. Depending on how far the housing director decides to pursue these back-stabbing endeavors (and whether I can get my money back for this semester's tuition), combined with how much I don't look forward to having to deal with a certain neo-Nazi shitface for another semester, there is a slight chance that I may be back in MN sooner than anticipated. I'm too damned tired to put up with this crap.

Thursday, March 20, 2008

another post

Now that I've had a day and a half to get over the jetlag, I'm posting again. I realized as I arrived at Ichikawa-shiohama station (the station closest to my apartment) that even though I've only lived here for around 4 months, it has become home to me. As soon as I saw those three sleazy-looking 'love hotels' just outside the station, I felt like I was home. Also, I see why the Tokyo area is seen as a constantly changing place. Even though I was only gone for 3 months, there are several things I've noticed that are slightly different, even at tiny Ichikawa-shiohama station. Also, Domino's in Japan raised their prices... a 'large' cheese pizza is now a full 4oo yen more expensive than it was when I left =( I guess I won't be getting delivery very often. I'm hoping that Cosco didn't also raise their pizza prices, because that would suck majorly (although I'd still be getting their pizza from time to time, as it's the only actual American-style pizza I've been able to find in Japan).

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Back in Nihon

Well, I'm officially back in Japan. I didn't end up opening either of the boxes of girl scout cookies on the plane ride, so I now have 2 boxes for the Possible Purim Pizza Party. My checked baggage didn't make the weight limit (it was like 65 pounds), but the lady who was checking baggage didn't charge me any extra for it. Of course, it took me about 2 hours to make it from Narita airport to my apartment by train (which involved a great deal of hauling my shit up and down escalators, and even worse, stairs). I found out that I still don't really understand my landlady, but that's to be expected after not really practicing my Japanese for 3 months. I was initially thinking I'd order a pizza before going to bed, but I think I'm too exhausted to deal with that right now.