Friday, September 26, 2008

Out and about

No pictures again this time... I don't have good lighting in my room so I need to take them in the daytime, but lately I've been out all the time!
I've been pretty busy over the last week; I started a new job at a conversation cafe, and I've just been out and about. My roommates threw a welcome party on Tuesday, which was very nice and also very fun. We took out the screens separating my room and Hiroshi's room to create one big space, so everyone actually fit, haha. Plus there was the balcony leading to the roof. I finally went up there, and there's a pole to hang laundry, but I probably won't be using it much since it's easier to just hang it in my room than to go all the way up to the roof.
Thursday I started at yet another conversation cafe, then afterwards I went with my roommate Naoko to a magazine launch party. Nylon magazine started a version for men, and Naoko is friends with one of the editors.
Tomorrow is a Japanese lesson, then after is a barbeque at my new boss's place. Free food \o/ Hopefully there will still be some left by the time I get there! It's officially starting around noon, but my japanese lesson lasts till 3 so I won't get there till much later.
Apparently Kanda (where my new job is located) is right near a huge bookseller district! I will definitely be checking that out sometime soon. I heard there are even some English-language stores in the mix.
Speaking of English books, I joined a book club here too. The founder is the same woman who runs the Democrats Abroad and organized the Obama support meeting I went to a couple weeks ago. I went to my first meeting on Wednesday, and luckily managed to land myself next to some other people who also had not liked the book we read for this month. We were few, but we were vocal in our distaste, haha. I also met a woman there who teaches yoga here in Tokyo; I may try to head by her studio at some point. I'm still planning on joining a gym, but it might be cool to try out some yoga...
Anyway I guess that's it for now; I'll try to remember to take some pictures tomorrow before I head out to my lesson and barbeque.

Monday, September 15, 2008


I'm all moved into my new place in Shinjuku! It's pretty good so far; I haven't finished unpacking yet since I was out all day yesterday, but once I finish I'll take some pictures and post them up here. It's a very old, traditional house; my room has sliding doors made of rice paper separating my room from my roommate Hiroshi's room, and sturdier sliding doors leading to the hallway. There's glass covering the rice paper though, so it's not so bad. We've got one of those fancy toilets with a bidet and seat-warming capability for the winter, lol. I finally met the mysterious third roommate as well, and he seems fairly cool too. We talked for a bit yesterday, but unlike the other two this one doesn't speak English, so it was a pretty broken conversation!
Anyway I should get back to unpacking; I want to run out and get some food pretty soon too. Apparently there's an Indian curry place nearby, I might check that out.

Monday, September 8, 2008


I'm moving this Saturday, up to a share house in Shinjuku. I won't be living alone anymore, but Shinjuku is a much more convenient location, and my rent will go down as well. I'll have a room in a house with three other Japanese roommates. I'm hoping to get some good Japanese practice in, having Japanese roommates.
Speaking of Japanese, I signed up to take the JLPT (Japanese Language Proficiency Test). I signed up for level 2, which is above my current level, but I'm hoping that by December when the test is held I will have brought myself up to a point where I may have a shot at passing it... It tests only kanji, vocab, reading, grammar, and listening comprehension - no speaking - so hopefully it will be okay. If I can get a level 2 qualification that will open up so many more job opportunities here. Starting next year, the test will be held twice a year instead of only once, so I'll have another opportunity in July... but by that point I'm not sure how useful it would be, since I'm not really planning on staying another year after this one.