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Monday, October 27, 2008

Vol 11



This pass week has been crazy with test.
And the next few weeks looks as if its only going to get worst.
That sucks.
I’ve actually been meaning to update for some time now, but I just don’t feel like it.
My attention span doesn’t last long enough for me to update regularly.
My school BBQ is on Friday.
Halloween Party is on…Friday….Saturday….Thursday?
One of those days.
But I’m not to sure if I’m going to go to that.
And my concert is on Saturday.
So I’ll be died tried again this weekend.

I went out to eat Thursday with some classmates.
We went to the burger place.
The food was okay but the conversation was better.
Talking about Halloween costumes has never been so funny.
From what we talked about:
Me=Hamster
Lena= Ganguro
Tone= Hard Gay…maybe?…Coming soon
Yong=Ballerina with the swam tutu
Jungeun unni= Not sure yet
Un Nyun= Cow (a.k.a GyuuNyuu)

미안합니다 Un Hyun if I’m spelling your name wrong.
That’s why it’s so much easier for me to call you GyuuNyuu

GyuuNyuu is Japanese for Milk.
I couldn’t think of the word for cow, so I end up calling him GyuuNyuu.

On Friday I went out with my classmates, again.
This time we went to eat at this really fast paced diner.
Then we went to Roppongi.
We should have waited before going to Roppongi.
When we got there it was around 7pm.
The place that Steve was going to take us to was having a private party, so we couldn’t go there until 12:30am.
Instead, we went to the restaurant to wait from Roxana and Chole.
We only ordered something to drink, but it was so expensive.
A soda was $5.
Coffee was $6, and the size of the coffee cup was like the size of my thumb.
SERIOUSLY!!!
Since sitting in there was costing to much, we decided to go wait for Roxana and Chole else where.
We went to this place called Gaspanic,
It’s this bar/club place.
Really small, but nothing in Tokyo is big.
It didn’t have a cover charge, but in order to stay in there you had to buy something to drink.
That’s kind of difficult to do when you don’t drink Alcohol.
The only thing I could drink was Soda, but water cost more than Soda.
And I don’t like soda either.
And it’s not like you can buy something once and that’s the end.
No!
They have guys walking around with a drink menu, and if these guys see that you haven’t had anything for a while, they come over to you and make you order something.
So I spent $20 in Roppongi in 2 hours on just Soda.
Alcohol was cheaper than Soda.
Makes me think that my wallet would be happier if I started drinking.

Another thing I don’t like is clubs.
So I didn’t really want to go but I did.
And I had fun.
Japanese clubs are better than American clubs.
They even play better music.
And I’ll tell you this, they didn’t play a single Japanese song.
Everything was English.
Rap/Hip Hop/R&B.
Everything we listen to in Baltimore, they were playing
I almost died when the entire club started to do the Soulja Boy dance when that song game on.
I mean died in a bad way.
I hate Soulja Boy.
Japanese DJ’s kick @$$.
But AJ…wow!!!!
This guy and his dancing…
WOW!!!I mean wow in a bad way.
Not that it was bad, but it wasn’t good.
Jessica was grateful that he was there, since he too dances like a white girl.
But the weird thing was that people were copying him.
Lester…WOW!!!I had no clue this boy could break dance.
He might be bad in Japanese but he’s shockingly good at dance.
Roxana…I’m not even going to talk about her.
She knows what I want to say.
What we all want to say.
Un Nyun (a.k.a GyuuNyuu a.k.a Soju Oppa) this guy has no rhythm but it was really fun trying to teach him how to dance.
But he suddenly burst out with the “Tell Me” dance.
That was one of the high lights of the night.

We left GasPanic around 2am, and went across to the Bar place that Steve originally wanted to take us too.
It’s a Mexican bar, ran by Japanese of course.
They have the best buffalo wings ever.
They can rival that of Hooters wings.
And the Nachos were okay.
No great, but okay.
I make better Nachos with cheese dorito’s and chili.
Just ask anyone from my previous job.

The bar had darts so I played that with Steve and Jungeun Unni.
Steve is good, but I sucked.
Jungeun wasn’t so bad either but still not good.
We left that bar around 3:30am.
But since the trains had stopped running at 12am, we were stuck in Roppongi until 5am.
So we went to McDonalds until then.
I’ve never sat in McDonalds overnight before.
And I don’t have intentions of doing that again.
Those stool things hurt.

I finally got home around 6am.
I took a shower and ate breakfast before going to bed.
But I woke up around 11am because I had to meet Jo in Harajuku at 2pm.
We had plans to go Idol shopping.
Japan has tons of stores that sell nothing but pictures and posters of famous young actors/singer.
Harajuku alone has about 8 shops.
It took about 3 hours to get through all 8.
And Lena, Jo, and I took Purikura.
Super cool Purikura.
I got to hang upside down like a monkey.

But, I went home early because I wanted dinner and my little idol buddy Miura Haruma’s drama was coming on.

I didn’t do anything on Sunday.
Still tired from Friday and Saturday.

But while I was talking to one of the Unni’s we found out that we have a lot of the same interest when it comes to music, actors, and shows.

That’s pretty much it.
I should be studying Kanji right now.
Actually…I should be sleep.

Happy Birthday Deja.
Happy Birthday Sakura.
And Thanks parents.
By the way, the picture above cracks me up.
Look at the bartender sneaking in.
And I stole this picture from Tone.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Video Post

video

video

video

This clip below is great because of the guy.
This guy is playing some sort of DJ game.
This game is meant for 2 people to play. One on each side.
But this guy is playing both sides perfectly.

video

Vol 10

video


I’m pretty sure everyone has heard that Japan has small portions when it comes to food.
That’s pretty much true, but there’s a catch.
Although they eat small portions, they eat a lot.
For example, today for dinner I ate Chinese pork, sashimi, bacon soup, pumpkin, rice, dumplings, and lettuce.
For desert I ate apple pie, peach Jell-o, and an orange.
In my room I have chocolates and pastries that my host family tried to make me eat.
And when I say that it’s too much they say,“You’re so slim. You should eat more.”

On the other hand, I checked out the gas station that’s down the street.
Actually, I walked passed it on the way to the store, and I saw the price of gas.
150 yen for regular.
That’s $1.50 in American dollars.
So cheap!!

Lately I’ve been saying that Japan has America beat in many areas, but I never thought that they would surpass America in this area.
Convenient stores.
There’s a saying that for every 12 people in Tokyo, Japan has a Kobini (Japanese way to say convenient store).
There’s about 4 within a 3 block radius of my school.
Probably more, but I won’t know unless I walk down those side streets.

Big Bang is performing in Ikebukuro tomorrow.
I should go after school home is about 550 kb/s.
I always though that to be fast until just now.
I just looked at my computer downlod speed and it's over 1100kb/s.
This would be the perfect time to have my external hard drive so I can get everything.

Japan has crazy fast internet service.
My download speed at

Oh yeah!
I saw something interesting on Monday.
While walking through the train station I saw this guy try to pick pocket this lady and run.
But he was chased down by some of the other bystanders and was caught.
It was interesting, but I kept walking since I’m not THAT nosey.

Shiawase no Kinyoubi......
I'm not sure if that is even grammatically correct, but who cares.
We're level one.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Vol 9



I figured it’s about time for me to update.
If you look on the left side of my blog, you'll see a link to my photo album.
<<<<<<<<<<<<



お元気ですか。
私は元気です・
いいてんきですね。
私はとでも忙しいです。

I bet only one person can read that.
No! I KNOW only one person can read that.

Since classes are in full swing now, I’ve been busy with homework and things like that.
I think I mentioned before that classes don’t let out until 4:45pm.
And by that time it’s dark.
Some of the students will go out to eat after that, but I normally go home.
So Mon-Thurs is pretty much the same routine.
Wake up-Breakfast-School-Home- Dinner-Homework-*repeat*
Although my other classes have started.
The American students are required to take an extra class as well as the culture class.
We have a choice in what extra class we wish to take.
I’m taking the Beginners Conversation class.
There’s probably about 50 students in there.
Americans, Chinese, and Koreans all can take this class.
In the first class we had to walk about an introduce ourselves, say our hobbies, goal, likes and dislikes, and ask someone these questions.
Simple!
But this class is only 45 minutes, once a week.

I went out with some Korean classmates on Friday after class.
Not my classmates but my friends’ classmates.
I went with Lena, Jo, and Tone.
We were the only Americans.
There was 2 Korean girls, and 5 Korean guys.
Mike joined as later, so that made 5 Americans.
They took us to little Korea town.
We ate at this place where you pay $30 and its all you can eat and drink for 2 hours.
And $15 for all you can eat, if you don’t drink alcohol, for 2 hours.
うまい~~~!!!!!!
The food was good, and the people I was with were entertaining.
Especially Yong-oppa.
That guy is just crazy, but in a good way.
He’s 27 but doesn’t look his age at all.
And Jun-oppa speaks really good English.
Overall, they were really nice.
Only Jun, Jo, and I didn’t drink.
Jo didn’t feel to well so she didn’t want to drink, and Jun and I never drink.
I did take a sip of whatever Lena was drinking.
Actually half a sip.
1/16 of a sip.
And I felt sick after I took that sip.
I don’t think my body can metabolize alcohol.
So…won’t be taking anymore 1/16 of a sip of anything else.
I really felt bad after that sip, so I left after we finished eating.
I planned on going home but I walked around for a while and ended up in Kabukicho.
The infamous place my advisor said not to go to.
I went home around 11pm, and Lena sent me a message saying they went karaoke-ing after I left.

Saturday was Culture Class.
Oh My Gosh!
That was so boring.
I think I slept the entire 3 hours of the class.
And if I wasn’t sleep, I was looking at Chole draw.
I don’t even want to think about that class.
After the class was over we had a 50 minute break before we had to go to the museum.
We caught the train to the Edo Tokyo Museum.
A little fact about me you should know:
I have absolutely no interest what so ever in Art.
*Don’t kill me Jime*
Unless you consider architecture art, I had no interest in that museum.
The only thing I found interesting were those little model villages.
And, that’s only because I study Carpentry and Architecture for 4 years in High school.
So I left out the museum and Meaghan and I went to go eat.

After the museum I went to Shibuya with some classmates.
We wanted to go karaoke-ing.
We went to some Karaoke place both Jo and Lena knew about.
That was an ordeal.
I will never go Karaoke-ing with Anthony again.
That guy is just too funny.
But we sang a variety of songs.
Most were English, but Lena and I tried our hand was Korean song Ice Cream by MC Mong.
Jo, Lena, and I sang some Japanese songs as well.
But Anthony and Tone can seriously make a living as professional Karaoke-ers.
We were there for about 3 hours and our bill came up to $300.
I tried some hard not to spend a lot of money this weekend but Tokyo is raping my wallet.
FAST!
When we divided the bill by who ordered what, I only had to pay $27.
I’m the smart one.
I didn’t order anything because the mandatory drink you have to buy.
And that was some orange juice thing that I didn’t even drink.
We took Purikura after that, and then went home around 10:30pm.

Today I didn’t do anything.
I set in my room and watching TV all day.
I did my homework on Friday and Saturday during that boring Culture class, so I had nothing to do today.
My other host sister, Machiko, and her husband, Ken, came over for lunch.
For some reason I can understand Machiko’s Japanese more than I can understand Sachiko’s.
Maybe because Machiko and I were mainly talking about people and shows, whereas Sachiko and I would talk about a lot of stuff.
Machiko is a Will Smith Fan, and she asked me to recommend some America movies to her….
So….someone should recommend some movies so I can tell her.
Ken was rather shy/quiet.
I guess his not knowing English kind of made him less talkative.
But it’s okay, because when he did talk it was mainly about how cool my hair is.
The Japanese and their Fascination with my braids.
They should go to Shibuya and check out the guys who are darker than me and have their hair like mine as well. *check my pictures*

On the other hand…
I was almost ran over by 4 bikes in 15 seconds on Friday.
Seriously, riding bikes on the side walk should be illegal.
And having toddlers on both the front and back should be illegal, but it’s not.
The bikes are actually made with seats on the front and back for toddlers.
Because of Japanese and it’s high prices, I’ve decided to put myself on a limit.
No more than $40 a week, and that includes when I go out on the weekend.

Big Bang is having a free performance on the 22nd, but I have class.
But my concert is only 12 days away, and I’m not going to class on that day.
I don’t even want to take a tour of Tokyo.
I’ve already been to the places I wanted to see.
We have our school event on the 31st, which is a BBQ and its at Odaiba.
So we can BBQ on the beach and play in the arcades with our costumes on.
And Odaiba is so close to me, about 7 minutes by car.
I’ve only been here for about 2 weeks, and yet I’ve already took over 1000 pictures.

I have nothing else to post about, so when something interesting happens I’ll post again.

じゃね

Monday, October 13, 2008

Vol 8




Happy Sports Day!

Today is a National Holiday in Japan.
Sports Day!
What exactly is this sports day you ask?
I have no idea.
But I do know that I love this day because of NO SCHOOL!


I’ve been pretty busy/entertained this pass weekend.
On Friday I went out with some of the Americans and the Korean girl Ju Hyun to Shibuya.
It was Ju Hyun’s birthday I told her to tag along with us.
We decided to eat dinner somewhere in Shibuya.
At first this was going to be a thing with only 4 of us at the most, but somehow it ended with 10 of us.
We went to some cozy restaurant.
The food was really good, but it was the biggest rip-off ever.
Our bill was 40 dollars more.
Why?
Because of some little small tiny 4oz dish thing they gave us when we first sat down.
It’s not like we asked for it, nor did we even eat it.
They gave one to each of us, and it turns out that that dish cost $4 a piece.
10*4=40
And I didn’t even get full.
But Shibuya is a really pretty place nonetheless.

Oh, but early Friday afternoon I went out to eat with some of the Americans and this Korean guy.
I don’t know what I ate but the Korean guy recommended it, so I tried it.
It was おいしい (delicious).

On Saturday I went out with my host family.
I got to meet the oldest daughter, Sachiko, and her son, Kou-chan.
At first Kou-chan was really shy.
He walked around with his hands over his face for the first two hours.
We went to this really huge fish market somewhere in Ginza.
One of the fish people even gave me free fish.
Sometimes it pays to be a foreigner.
There was a food festival going on in that area, so we got to try all this fresh fresh fresh food.
I never had blowfish before, but I think I’ll eat it again before I leave.
After the food festival we went to Sachiko’s house.
She lives in a 35-story apartment building in Toyosu.
Man, she has the best view ever.
But I don’t have pictures of the view, because I had left my camera in the car.

I went out with Lena on Sunday.
We went to Tokyo Tower.
The view there is so cool.
We were so high up you can see the surrounding cities for miles.
And there were a ton of foreigners there.
Lena and I met up with Jo and Sumiko (two other American girls) in Harajuku around 1:30pm.
That was a mistake because I end up shopping.
Harajuku has some of the best stores ever.
This spot is probably my favorite spot, and I would like it more if it wasn’t so crowded.
I bought a Jumper (I always loved Jumpers), a jacket, shirt/dress thing, and this other really cute dress.
I don’t even like dresses, so I wonder how many times I’ll wear it.
I decided to leave at 5:30pm so we took Purikura before then.
Purikura is a photo booth that you can took pictures in and then doodle on the pictures.
The picture in the post below is an example of Purikura.

Since my host mom is away, it’s just me and my host dad.
My host mom went to the hot springs.
Yeah…..thanks for not taking me……-_-
Today I went out with my host dad, Sachiko, Kou-chan, and Sachiko’s husband.
We went to Okachimachi, which I suppose to be little Korean town, or something like that.
But that place is really cheap.
Sachiko loves window shopping, so we walked around Okachimachi and looked at a ton of different things.
Then we all went to this Korean place to eat lunch.
I don’t think Sachiko’s husband can eat spicy food, because he was like….sweating while eating.
And not because of the weather.
But I didn’t like the place we ate because you ate to sit on the floor.
The food was good, but the floor thing….だめ (bad).
We dropped Sachiko and her family off after that before going to Odaiba,

Odaiba is like the Ocean city of Japan, but not as big.
Odaiba is really pretty and fun.
Everyone who knows me know that I am a boy.
I am not a girl.
I don’t like dresses/skirts, make-up, heels, or getting my all done all curly and stuff.
I prefer Jeans, T-shirts, and tennis.
I’ll wear my hair in braids 12 months out of a year.
So like a boy I LOVE THE ARCADES.
Odaiba has some of the best arcades I’ve saw in Tokyo.
HUGE arcades.
I’m like a kid in a candy shop when I go to Arcades.
Or like a fat kid in a video game shop.
But since I was with my host dad, I didn’t play many games.
Only the basketball game.
I scored 68 points in 1 minute.
I'll go back to it soon, because I have to show Jo has to get to Zepp Tokyo.
Then I can really play.
But Odaiba has a great view even if you are on ground level.
You can also see the famous Rainbow bride at the beach.

There’s nothing more I want to say, so I’ll go finish watching my drama now.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Vol 7




Okay….
Since I’m getting tons of emails with tons of questions, I think I better update this blog.
I’m going to skip some stuff, because I don’t feel like writing it and it’s not important.

Sunday I checked out of the hotel around 9am and made my way down to Shinjuku station.
I was suppose to meet my school there at 7:30pm so they can introduce me to my host family.
Since I got there early, I put my stuff inside of a coined locker, and Lena and I went to explore the city.
We ate a this Indian restaurant .
The food was okay.
I probably won’t go there again, but if I do I’ll try something else.
We pretty much walked the city after that, but we got bored so we went back to Harajuku.
Harajuku is very entertaining, if I haven’t mentioned that before.

So we walked around the shops in Harajuku, before we sat down and started taking pictures of any and everyone.
We also went to Yoyogi Park, which is about a block away from Harajuku.
That place is interesting.
Right at the entrance of Yoyogi Park was this group of men.
They were a few marbles short because they looked like they stepped right out of Grease….
Need I say more.
I love Grease, but that was just wrong on so many levels.
We met up with Casey around 5:30pm and at 6pm I left and went back to Shinjuku station.

I should mention that while on my way to Shinjuku station the first time, I got lost.
And not lost in the city.
I got lost in the station.
This station is HUGE!!!!
They weren’t lying when they said 2 million people walk through the station daily.
The entire Inner Harbor *including the Gallery* can fit inside this station.
TWICE~~!!!!!!
And still have room.
This station house about 6-8 different train lines.

Anyway, I met my host mom around 7:30pm.
Her name is Tomoko Sudo.
She is 52.
She likes to drink, study English, and play ping-pong with her English speaking friends.
Although she’s getting up there in age, she’s more lively than me.
She won’t even been home on the 12th and 13th because she’s going up north to the hot springs with her friends.

I also met my host dad, Ryoichi Sudo.
Ryo for short.
Ryo is 61 and more calm then Tomoko.
He’s retired so he’s home everyday, but he too likes to go out.
He goes to the library, shopping centers, and out to drink every once in a blue with his friends.
Ryo has traveled to over 20 different countries.
He and Tomoko also visited Baltimore one year….about 2-3 years ago.

They have 3 children who I haven’t met yet.
A 26 year old son, 28 year old daughter, and a 30 year old daughter.
They have 2 grandsons as well.
It’ll only be a matter of time before I meet these 5 as well.

On the first night with my host family we didn’t eat, because I already out when I was with Lena, and I ate at Shinjuku station as well.
The pretty much allow me to do as I please, and I also DO NOT have a curfew.
They just said that if I go out, at least try to make the last train home because taxi’s are expensive.
At first I was waking up around 6:30am for breakfast, but Tomoko said that I can get up whenever I please.

On the second night they cooked a lot.
I’m not sure if they cooked that much because I was there, or if the Japanese normally eat such large meals.
We ate meat loaf, fish, sushi, dumplings, fruit, veggies, pudding, yogurt, and something else.
Pretty much every meal has been large like that.
For breakfast we eat fruit, veggies, tomatoes, eggs, some times soup, and bread.
I should mention that Japanese bread is like twice the size of American bread.
Google it.
And the grapes are way better than American grapes.

This is too much food.
I would cry about getting fat, but as much walking as I do here, getting fat is not the problem.

School sort of kind of started on Monday.
I have to catch two trains to school, but I do more walking then sitting on the train.
We had a welcoming ceremony for all the new students. That included the Chinese, Korean, and American students.
That lasted for about 3 hours.
It was cool how they would translate what was said in Japanese to Korean, Chinese, and English.


After the ceremony had to take a placement test.
That didn’t go well at all.
Though I did fairly well on the listening part, when it came to the writing section, I got up and walked out.
It was all grammar, and if you haven’t realized yet from reading this blog…
I SUCK IN GRAMMAR!
English, Japanese, Spanish, Korean, etc….I suck in grammar.
So I am in level 1, which is okay because I lack basic conversation skills anyway.
My teachers in Baltimore never really taught conversation skills.
Just straight out of the textbook.

One Tuesday we had English orientation, which basically went over everything that us English speakers needed to know.
The school also gave us a luncheon, so we were able to mix and meet with the staff/teachers.
Our English advisor talked about the trains, and how there’s this thing called the priority seats.
He said these seats were to be offered to the elderly, pregnant, injured, and to people with implants………

The advisors and other teachers took us on a tour of Shinjuku.
So, we got to go the 百円 store. *Dollar store*
Japanese puts America to shame yet again.
This store has EVERYTHING.
And I mean EVERYTHING.
You name it, it has it.
Maybe not that store in particular, because it was only one floor, but I heard the one near me has 3-4 floors.
That reminds me of the 三百六十円 store. *$3.50 store*
That store had nothing but clothing and accessories on sell for $3.50
EVERYTHING was $3.50
Jeans, shirts, shoes, belts, bags, EVERYTHING!
But that store is so crowded you can barely move around.

Wednesday was the first day of actual class.
My class is class A112, which is located in the pink building *check my pictures*
There is only one other American in the class, but that’s not good because he’s a complete novice.
He never studied Japanese before, so he’s of no use to me.
Most of the time I have to tell him what’s going on.
There’s 6 Chinese studies as well, 2 of which fall into the same category as the other American, and 8 Koreans, of which one falls into that category.
I think one of the Korean guys speak English, because he was the only one who knew what Baltimore was, and can say English words without an accent, but I Don’t know since I haven’t talked to him yet.
I sit near 4 girls and one guy.
Although they all can speak Korean, they make an effort to talk to me.

I have 3 teachers. Keiko Kamisaka, Masami Saitou, and one other teacher who I will meet next week.
The 3 teachers rotate throughout the week.
It’s the schools way of exposing us to how Japanese can sound different depending on the speaker.

~~~~~~~~~~~


About the people:

Tokyo is a city with 12 million people, so it’s impossible to walk anywhere.
And these people love their bikes.
I can bet my life that I will get hit by a bike before I leave Japan.
I just know it.
And it’s not like America.
They can ride on the side walk.
And bikes are made for 3 people as well.
One person sits on the back, one on the seat, and in the front.
It’s me like that for parents with children.
I don’t understand how something that dangerous can be safe.

Japanese people are rather distant.
Some will come up to me and ask me about my hair.
My hair seems to be the topic of all conversation with Japanese people.
I even had 5 guys completely stop and stare at my hair.
But unless you ask them for help, the possibility of someone coming up to you at random can be slim to none, depending on what area you are in.
But when I talk to them, it’s rather interesting.

The Korean at my school are nice.
I was told before that Koreans are more open, and that’s true.
Although they can be distant as well, they will come up to you at random and just talk with their broken English.

The Americans….we’ll since we are the minority everywhere….
We only have ourselves. XD
I find some of them annoying at times, but I don’t talk to them much.
All in All the Americans are cool
We tend to hang out most of the time.


~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Where I live:


I live in Kouto-ku city. *Never heard of it*
It’s in between two other cities I never heard of.
The famous shopping district Ginza, is 3 train stations away.
I plan to go there with some of the Americans from school.
Odaiba is also close to me.
Disney land is located in Chiba Japan, which is outside of Tokyo, but its about 30 minutes away from me.
So in a way I live in a good area.
I’m the only one who can get to school in under 45 minutes, besides Lena, who arranged her own housing.

I live on the Tokyo Bay.
Yes. On!
My city is surrounded by water.
Not just my city, my apartment.
I have to cross two bridges to get to my train station.
I took a video of it, which I’ll upload later.

Well, it’s going on 11pm here, and I have a test in the morning, but I feel that I’ve caught you all up….
So~~!!!!!
Check out my photo album, which I will update daily, unlike this blog.




Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Vol 6.2



On Saturday I was suppose to meet up with Lena again, because she was going to show me how to get my cell phone.
I left out of my hotel around 10am, but when I called her she never answered.
So I walked around Ikebukuro a little more before I called her back.
Still no answer, so I pulled out my handy dandy trusty rusty train map to see what trains I need to catch to get to Harajuku.
Because I was a novice at that time, it took about 30 minutes to get to Harajuku.
Not because I got lost, which I didn’t, but because I took the long way.
I caught the M line down to the C line, and caught the C line to Harajuku.
Now if I knew more about the trains I could have just got the Yamanote line and got off 3 stops later, and I would have been in Harajuku in….10 minutes.

Harajuku is really really really crowded, and that’s saying something. It’s almost impossible to get anywhere because there are so many people.
I walked around looking at all the different just similar shops.
This place kind of reminds me of Chinatown in New York.
You can find anything.
After walking for about 10 minutes I saw this group of black guys.
Yep, black guys.
And not just one.
6 of them.
They own a show store there, and they stand outside trying to get people to come in.
When they saw me they called out “Hey Black girl!” -_-
That was funny, but they told me how to get the Softbank.

Softbank is a cell phone provided in Japan.
Like America has AT&T, Sprint, and Verizon, Japan has Softbank, DoCoMo, and ADDI.
I got a prepaid phone and it cost about 10,000 yen, which is $100.
I get free incoming calls, but I have to pay for outgoing, and for 3 dollars a month I can get unlimited messaging.
It’s a cool phone but would be better if it was a flip phone.
I bought a Yoochun cell phone strap for it.
And I saw NEWS ride down the street on a truck.

The thing about Harajuku is, it’s a place for females.
They have shops strictly for men, but more shops for girls.
Not to mention those idol shops that all the Japanese girls go to waste their money on pictures of their favorite idols.

I walked from Harajuku to Meiji shrine which is about a block away.
Meiji shrine is not for the weak.
You have to walk miles.
You can walk for an hour and still only cover a small portion of it.
The temple was nice and there were about 3 weddings going on.
I decided to leave but I stopped at the café and ate first.
I had Chinese noodles.
Man, Yat Ga Mien, or however you spell it, was also put to shame.
I though Japanese eat small portions.
Well, that’s a lie.
I’m getting fat and I’ve only been here for a week.
So after eating I decided to leave, but I saw another path you could walk.
I walked up that path and it felt like forever before I came to an exit.
But that wasn’t the same exit I came in, and I REFUSED to walk back to the other exit.
That would take about an hour.
Since the train system in Japan is the best, or second best after Seoul, I knew I would come to a subway if I just walked straight, so I did.

Trains are not the only way to get around in Japan.
Bikes are popular here.
Too popular if you ask me.
They can ride bikes on the side walk, so I can’t even count how many times I almost got hit by a bike.
EVERYONE rides a bike.
Young, old, fat, skinny, tall, short, mothers with children on the back, mothers with children on the front, mothers with children on the back and front.
I don’t even know how that last one is allowed.
That’s not safe.

Anyway, I walked for about 30 minutes before I saw a sign that said “Shinjuku ward”.
That’s when I realized I was entering a different city.
A good city because it has the largest train station, which I will talk about later.
Lena cracked up when she heard that I walked from Shibuya ward to Shinjuku ward.
But it was okay with me, because now I could walk around Shinjuku, but I didn’t feel like it.
So I just walked around the area that I was in until I saw the train station.
I decided to go back to the hotel, but I wanted dinner.

Once I got back into Ikebukuro, I walked around trying to find what I wanted to eat.
Then saw this rotating Sushi bar across from the hotel, and I went there.
I didn’t sit down, but ordered out.
When I got back to the hotel I ate that, but I think something was in it that I shouldn’t have ate, because my head started itching like crazy.
Or I just needed to oil it.
Lena called the hotel and that’s how I got in contact with her, but it was 8pm by that time.
She wanted me to go with her somewhere, but I didn’t feel like it since I was walking for the last 12 hours.
So I sat back and watched the drama ROOKIES.
That’s the most boring Japanese drama I ever looked at
I would not recommend that to anyone.
I fell asleep watching it, but I woke up in time to watch The King of Room, which stars Mizushima Hiro and Anne Suzuki.
That was pretty much my Saturday.
Again, you can see pictures if you look at the link in the post below.
All of my pictures are not uploaded but i'll get there one day.

Monday, October 6, 2008

Vol 6



おひさしぶり。
元気ですか。
私は元気です。


As I mentioned before, I am in Tokyo.
I arrived Friday afternoon around 3:30pm.
My friend Lena met me at the airport, so she showed me how to operate the train system, and how to purchase my train ticket/pass.
It took us about two hours to get from Narita airport, which is located in Chiba, down to my hotel in Tokyo.
The best way to get from the Narita would be by train or Limo Bus.
The Limo Bus cost about $30 and it makes different stops in Tokyo.
It takes about 1 hour 40 minutes on Limo Bus.
We caught the train from Narita to Tokyo.
Depending on what train you caught will determine how much you pay in the end.
It took us about 1 hour 30 minutes to get from the airport to my hotel, and cost about $15.
I stayed at the Sakura Hotel in Ikebukuro.
The Sakura hotel is basically a hotel for foreigners.
They own 4 hotels, 2-3 guest house, and about 4 dorms., with most of it’s occupants being from a different country.


Anyway, after I checked in the hotel and dropped off my luggage, I went out with Lena to explore Ikebukuro.
I should mention that Ikebukuro is one of the 23 wards (cities) that is located within Tokyo.
So you can say Tokyo is a city made up of 23 other cities.
First we were just walking around looking for nothing in particular.
Then we got hungry so we started to look for some place to eat.
No matter where you are in Tokyo there will be dozens of places to eat.
Different kinds of places.
Japanese, Chinese, American, Italian, Mexican, Indian, sub shops, sports bars, just dozens of places.
The problem is choosing where you want to eat.
While walking up one of the many crowded streets this Chinese guy approached us and showed us a menu of the place he worked.
It’s pretty much like the place where I eat Korean BBQ at back in America, only you buy the meat by single potions for a cheap price.
We decided to check this place out.



It was a small size restaurant but decent.
You can choose what kind of meet you want and they’ll bring it to you along with a coal table top grill.
We choose two different kinds of beef for about $2 a serving, but those two servings wasn’t enough so we ordered more and more.
The food was great.
It put the Korean BBQ, which I love so much, to shame.
We went there long, only about 40 minutes before we left.
We were suppose to meet up with Lena’s friend Casey and her boyfriend, so we went to HMV to wait for them.
HMV is the really huge music store.
It’s about 3-4 floors, and in some other places it occupy even more floors.
Around 10:30pm we met Casey and her boyfriend in front of the Hello Kitty shop.
We had to wait from Casey’s boyfriends’ friend to show up.
Once that guy arrived we went out to eat again.
He took us to this place about two blocks up from where we were standing called “The Lockup”.

The Lockup is the haunted prison style place where they handcuff you as they show you to your cell/table.
It was really cool.
The kind of place you would have a Halloween party in.
The down side about that place is that it’s so popular you only have 75 minutes in there.
They offered a variety of food which I will not name, but we got something called Russian Roulette potato balls.
It’s 5 potato puffs but the catch is that one of them will be extremely spicy while the rest are plain.
So each of us took one and Lena loss.
So the guy ordered another set but requested that they make 4 out of the 5 spicy.
Everyone lost except Lena.
This is a place for people who like to drink.
They have a large selection of drinks.
Casey ordered the Chemistry set drink where you mix the different fruity flavored alcohols together.
They also had something like a alcohol pill.
I don’t remember since I don’t drink, although in Japan I am legal.
We left there around 11:50pm and everyone decided to go home because the trains stop at 12am and taxis are dumb expensive here.
We were still in Ikebukuro so I walked back to the hotel.
Japan is a really safe place.
I won’t say safe but busy, so it’s almost impossible to do something to someone here without tons of witnesses.
That was pretty much my Friday night.
You can see pictures I took of Japan if you click the link below.


Friday, October 3, 2008

Vol 5

Im in Tokyo now.
I arrived at 3:30pm, instead of 4:30 like I was suppose to.
Currently I dont have a cellphone and my internet probably wont be connected until I move in with my Host family on Sunday.
Im using the computer at my hotel, but its really weird.
It doesn't have all the keys I need.
When my internet is up and running I'll post more about what Tokyo is like.
But this really is a city that doesn't sleep.
It's 12am and I just got back to my hotel after going out with my friends, but there are still so many people running out and about.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Vol 4



こんばんは。

シェロンです

"Goodbyes" and "So longs" are rather sappy, and they annoy the crap out

of me.

Just a little something I though you should know.

Actually, I hate when people create "See you later" post as well, but

here I am doing one.

My flight leaves tomorrow at 9:20am and I should arrive in Tokyo at

4:20pm FRIDAY.

So it'll be 3:20am for you east coast folks.

I'll update once I arrive and get my internet set up.

じゃね

P.S.

Remind me to shoot AT&T when I return.

Those little swindlers.

I'm going to tell くろさき on them, if I see him in Japan.

The picture above is one I took on my cellphone while walking on

the skywalk at the Inner Harbor.

I don't know what's up with this font. -_-