Sunday, May 20, 2007

Last Days

I only have 11 days in Fukuoka left. I am not going anywhere, or doing anything special. I am only trying to relax and spend time with my friends here and get the most out of my last days. The canadians and I are going to be one of the last groups leaving I-house, and as people leave, it becomes clearer and clearer that I had a really great time this year, and that it is going to be really hard not seeing some of my friends here anymore.

Having to return to university for an extremely busy 4th year is going to be really depressing. I hate my major already without having to overload my schedule with MORE of it. At least there is a bright light at the end of the tunnel. I may be able to return to Japan after I am done.

Living in Japan has left me with mixed emotions though. I want to come back because it is a beautiful place to live and I love the language and studying it, but then I look at the negative aspects and there is hesitation. I cannot stand so many things about Japan, such as the borderline racist, xenophobic attitude of most of the population, and the fact that there the Japanese government plays a very small part in protecting people living here. I have lost track of the times that I have gone to the hospital and was either misdiagnosed or underdiagnosed. I think that over time, as my Japanese develops, I will have a much easier time and at this point, most of the staring or speaking about me like I wasn't 5 feet away has lost its shock value. I am just going to finish my degree and then see how I feel. I think thats reasonable.

I went to round one last night, which is a rather large arcade/sports complex where you can stay all night and enjoy sports, video games, massage chairs, internet cafe, and karaoke, all for the price of a North American movie ticket. I have been 4 times so far, and I want to go again before I leave. Its a good chance to spend time with friends, and stay up late. These are the things that I will miss most about Japan I think. Mostly the childish stuff, but I think that's what attracts me to Japan the most. No matter how old you are here, you still have so many ways to act like a kid and enoy yourself.

Wednesday, May 02, 2007

Tokyo Judo Tour

I have finished my free tour of Tokyo and I am nearly done all "learning" at university here. I only have 2 more make up classes and then some weak exams and I'm done. Oh, and 3 extremely papers which I would be hard pressed to call essays. My plans for the last month in Japan are as follows: Go to the beach, maybe travel within Fukuoka. That's about it.

Anyway, I am posting all the Tokyo pictures on my MSN page, but here, I am going to post some funny ones I found. The first are from the airline emergency procedure manual..... ahem.In Case of Water Landing, inflate your vest, jump in the water, and vigourously masturbate, since you are probably going to drown very soon anyway.

In Case of Accidental landing in the flaming pits of Hell, follow the attendants orders
In an Emergency, babies should be spared a painful death by shooting their ass with deadly neurotoxin filled blow darts.
In Case of an emergency, performing self -fellatio is A-OK. Everyone else will be doing it any way. Also, making out with babies is acceptable.
In Japan, birds are the stupidest creatures and are for some reason used to represent the general public at train stations. Direct translation from Japanese: "Don't be a stupid fucking bird or serious harm will come to you."

On a more travel related note, Tokyo was pretty good. We got to take a plane there and that made travel a lot faster. We arrived Saturday afternoon and got to the hotel. The rest of the day was spent relaxing and touring Tokyo. The judo club payed for everything that was not souvenir and amusement related. We went to a nice restaurant at the airport for lunch, and I had a super delicious and probably unhealthy fried chicken sandwich. I am definitly going to make katsu for everyone when I get back. In my opinion, it is the finest honour you can give to a dead animals meat. On Sunday we had the tournament in the morning. I was scheduled for out schools 3rd match up, but our boys cleaned up in the 1st round and tied in the 2nd, so were were actually in contention for First place. At this point, I was pulled from the last round and replaced with a "black belt" because apparently, my months of training weren't good enough. I actually was not very upset, since I got to take pictures and was integral in loudly cheering and shouting "FIGHT!" at the top of my lungs. I did Karaoke Sunday night with some of the girls It was fun, and my view that all Japanese girls can sing relaly well was further reenforced.

On Monday, I set out on my own. I went to Tokyo tower and then to a place called Odaiba. Odaiba was supposed to be a great and magic-filled place, but apparently, the entire man-made island closes on Mondays. The super high-tech Panasonic centre was closed and every other attraction. Plus the weather was overcast and windy, so the trip out there really tired me out and made me feel crappy. On the way back, I stopped in Ginza, which was really really nice. I also found a Subway! That was perhaps the only thing that made me happy that day. A real turkey club sandwich on a toasted basil and garlic bun. All in all, I really like Tokyo, but being there with other people makes the experience way better, otherwise its kind of lonely.