Sunday, October 21, 2007

Sightseeing and karaoke-ing

Not a lot has been happening lately, which is why there haven't been many posts. I'm planning on going sightseeing soon though, so I'll try to remember to bring my camera and post some pictures. I tried to go to Asakusa the other day, but I got lost trying to find the subway and somehow ended up walking straight into Akihabara. I didn't feel like trekking all the way back into Kanda and wandering around fruitlessly some more, so I decided to just head for Ginza instead, since it was really close and I hadn't been there yet. Ginza is the really, really expensive shopping district; as I was walking around I spotted a Chanel, a Dior, a Balenciaga, and a Bulgari - one at each corner of this one intersection. There was also a Le Cafe de Doutour, which I found kind of hilarious because it was basically just a Doutour (which is a coffee shop that you find everywhere - there's one right below where I work that I go to before going in) that they Ginza-fied. No ordinary Doutour will do for the Ginza shopper; when they finish buying their thousand-dollar Chanel bag they want a coffee shop with a fancy French name! There were actually some really cool buildings in Ginza - I took pictures, but they're all on my phone camera ^^;
After Ginza, I headed a couple stops down to Hamamatsucho to visit the Tokyo Tower. That brought back memories! I was like, aww, there's the Mos Burger that we stopped at in the mornings, and hey, there's the Shiba Park Hotel! So I've been to the tower during the day, but I wanted to go up it at night this time. Unfortunately, a lot of other people had the same idea and the line was huge, so I didn't end up going in because I was going to be meeting some people. I'll probably try to get someone to go up with me sometime in the future.
Oh! I almost forgot! I finally did karaoke! After I met up with everyone in Shibuya we went to an izakaya for some food and drinks (the bartender there was pretty cute, but man he was so slow and careful), then we went to a nomihoudai club nearby. Nomihoudai is basically just all-you-can-drink. We got there before midnight so it was pretty cheap - 1500 for women. Anyway, we ended up heading for karaoke afterward. Karaoke in Japan is different from in America; what you do is rent a room for you and your friends, so you're not singing in front of a bunch of strangers at a bar. Everyone gets a microphone, and there's an electronic remote that you use to pick what song you're going to do. At some places, you can also order food and drinks, but we didn't do that.
I still haven't bought any fall shoes, because I still haven't been PAID. We were supposed to have been paid last Monday, but there was a notice that it had been delayed and we would be paid on Friday instead. Friday came and went - no pay. Saturday there was another notice saying that we should be paid around the 25th. Not ON the 25th - AROUND the 25th. So, uh, I'm looking for other jobs right now. Nova's been having a ton of financial difficulties that have only come to light recently, so I'm thinking I might try to just jump ship elsewhere. There are a ton of English conversation schools around, and I've already got some interviews lined up.

Tuesday, October 9, 2007

Machida, mochi, and sushi, oh my

Today I went to a sushi-train restaurant in Machida with one of my roommates. It's this little restaurant where everyone sits around a circular bar, and there's a little conveyor belt that goes around and you pick the sushi you want off the conveyor belt. There's a couple sushi chefs in the middle replenishing what the customers take. The price is based on the color of the plate; something on a pink plate might be 100 yen, 150 yen on a yellow plate, etc. Then the final bill is determined by how many plates of what color you have after you're finished. It was pretty good, and not too expensive in the end.
We also stopped by the new department store that just opened up there, in order to pick up some mochi cream. Mochi is rice that's been pounded together into a soft, gooey texture; it's traditional to have mochi at new year's here. Mochi cream is flavored mochi with a cream filling inside. I picked up a blueberry one and a green tea one; my roommate got melon and strawberry flavors. They were really good, but soooo rich.
I also saw this really cute pair of ankle boots while we were poking around this one store; I might get them once I get paid, because I kind of need another pair of fall shoes. The vast majority of my shoes are sandals, but it's getting too cold to wear sandals anymore.
We should be getting internet in another couple weeks, so I'll hopefully be able to be online more and maybe post some pictures and stuff as well.