December 30, 2003

fuyuyasumi 冬休み

日本語をれんしゅうしている。 でも私の日本語はよくないです。 ごめんね!

Well this is my second attempt at writing this since for some reason it failed the first time.

Currently I'm doing absolutely nothing. I'm sitting around wasting away. It feels restless but I need to enjoy it while I can. Once school starts things will have to change and I will have to buckle down so I can do well. I wish I could be a professional slacker but yeah I can keep on dreaming.

At the moment I do not have any pictures to post. I will have to find whatever leftover pictures from Japan I have and post them. Other than that I wish everyone a happy new year. Keep it safe keep it clean!

Posted by thy at 11:00 PM | Comments (0)

December 25, 2003


xmas back in the states. Only two months ago I thought that I would be spending xmas in Japan but oh how fast things change. Maybe next year Iíll be living it up but for now there is a little twist in my plan, a little distraction that I must finish up.

This year's Christmas is unlike last year is bitter sweet. There is no longer white powder snow on the ground and friends visiting me like previously. Everyone I care about now is far away. Now I'm visiting friends and trying to keep myself occupied.

I've been missing all of my friends back from Japan camp. If you haven't received an email from me wishing you Merry Christmas / Happy Holiday and such, I'm doing it here hoping that you're checking up on me.

Hope all is well with where ever are you are. Have a great semester if you're still staying at KG. Otherwise have fun in your respectively country.

Posted by thy at 04:11 PM | Comments (1)

December 20, 2003


I finally finished unpacking today. It felt really strange unpacking the stuff I meticulously purchased from Japan. I associated each item to where I got it from, and whom I went there with. It was a total nostalgic trip.

Soon after I finished unpacking I felt my heart sank. I hate this feeling, I sat there wondering, when was the last time I felt this sad? I'm rarely ever this sad but I must say it's better than being depressed all the time like last school year. I rather take a few weeks of sadness then endure last year's torture.

Enough sadness aside, this is just a temporary thing. On the other hand I'm having reverse culture shock. I'm slowly remembering the fact that I must drive everywhere to do anything. So now instead of being stuck on the train I'm back stuck in traffic in my car. There actually a few more things like the grocery store but my jet lag is kidding in and I'm getting super sleepy. More to come later so check back soon.

To my friends I left back at Kansai, miss you all. You guys are the reason why Iím sad.

Posted by thy at 10:06 PM | Comments (1)

December 16, 2003

the last

Tonight was the last night in Japan. It's been a sad day of saying goodbyes and full of enjoyable moments. I finished most of my shopping and ate my very last dinner at a kaiten sushi. It was great! totemo oishikata yo.

When I finally got back to sem 1, I saw the flutter of friends looking for me. Most of them were making sure that I have not left yet without saying goodbye.

I ended the night in traditional Japanese style. Nomihodai Karaoke! Then we finished it off with bikori ramen.

It's been a wonderful day. I will miss many things here but tomorrow is a new day. U.S. here I came! Watch out Japan, it's not over yet.

Posted by thy at 10:01 AM | Comments (1)

December 12, 2003

They were the first

Today has been a solemn day for many of us. Thomas and Randy were the first to leave this afternoon. Some of us were trying to fight off our tears as we wish goodbye to them, it's been a great experience for many of us and itís a bit difficult saying goodbye. We all know full well we will not or might not ever see them again. However, we take solace in the fact that we have found such good international friends in a strange new country. Jun, the nicest Korean guy I've ever met, shed his goodbye tears for Randy, the only one that truly showed his full emotions. The rest of us stood around waving goodbye until the bus went out of sight.

Tomorrow another crowd will start to drift off.

Each day until the 25th everyone within this small family will leave. Tomorrow will be Maureen, Kristy, Mike, and John's turn. Sunday will be my roommate Chad and Elizabeth. Wednesday will be mine. The list of departures continue ...

Posted by thy at 05:40 AM | Comments (3)

December 08, 2003

parting ...

I've been in Japan for almost 4 months now. It's been a great experience and the semester is winding down. I barely have more than one week before I depart from this country. Just thinking about it makes me sad. I've only grown to love this country more and gotten accustomed to daily living.

I don't want to leave but there are lots of holes that I need to patch up back in the States. After that I'm 100% sure that I can do whatever I want and probably return to Japan. It's still a long ways off before any decisive decision can be made.

The departure date is fast approaching and everyday it makes me more nervous. I constantly wonder what else do I want to do before I leave. What other places haven't I visited? I just want to fully absorb everything and try to remember it before I loose all of it. I know that it will never be the same when I come back. I won't have the same great friends and the same experience through this school. I'm going to miss so much of it. This has been by far the best college experience that I have had yet.

My last adventure in Japan will begin tomorrow after my last Japanese final. After that I will try to be on the move. Iíll be doing last minute shopping, last minute stops at temples and other sights. And of course lots and lots of pictures!

I had a dream, I lived it and experienced it ... but it is time to move on. While for now at least ...

Posted by thy at 09:14 AM | Comments (3)

December 04, 2003

Tokyo Part 2

The adventure continues ...

The second day of my adventure was nothing like the day before. I visited the best view in Tokyo at the government center in Shinjuku, after the disappointment at the Tsukiji Fish market. The market only closes twice a month, only on Sundays and I happen to visit one of the two. I guess you won't see me winning the lottery soon!

Shinjuku is also the place that I will meet my brother and Ryan later that evening. The sights of Tokyo are magnificent from the 45 floor of the government building. The weather was hazy but the sun was out to provide some color. I did not remember at the time but supposedly on a clear day from the observation deck Mt. Fuji can be seen.

The next stop was Harajuku. Now I'm on the opposite side of town. This is where the kool kids hang out.

Harajuku, what can I say about this place that may not make it sound like a clichť. It's like everything I've read and seen in websites and books. I just did not realize how close the bridge with all the "interesting" kids were, itís just right outside the JR Harajuku station.

Harajuku was an awesome place, a great place to people watch. Everyone was zooming past each other doing their own business, rushing here and there. Shops crowded with young teens looking for the latest new things. Stores have massive advertisements signs hanging from their shops.

The mass of young people continued from Meji Dori all the way to Shibuya. There were only 2 things I wanted to see in Shibuya, the famous pedestrian intersection and the dog Hachiko. As it turns out it was not as glamorous as I thought. The intersection was HUGE, when the pedestrians have the right of way all traffic is closed and the intersection becomes the cross walk. The dog Hachiko did not seem as impressive either. There were plenty of people hanging around the statue as promised but it did not spur the emotional inspiration that I thought it would. Probably b/c I haven't eaten anything all day except for a Lawson pastry and the sun was setting.

My day ended when I walked all the way backed to Harajuku station only to find it was packed. I didn't want to wait any longer and decided that I still had plenty of time to kill. I started walking from Harajuku straight to Shinjuku. I roughly trekked along the road for almost an hour. Finding the locker with my belongings that I left at Shinjuku earlier was no joke, took me about an hour to find the right exit considering there are more than 50 exits and only one will lead me to the right locker.

Posted by thy at 10:46 PM | Comments (3)

December 01, 2003

Hitori de Tokyo ni itta

This is the first installment of many.

Alone in Tokyo. What an overwhelming thought. I have done things alone before but nothing like this. The thoughts still brings chills and excitement!

Breathing the fresh air at Central Tokyo station after the Shinkansen was the beginning of the trek. The first time in such a big city, I was a lost and confused soul. I felt so insignificant as these massive buildings tower over me. I leisurely walked around absorbing the city. Even though this is a big place, the city pace in this section was slow, similar to that of Washington D.C. More relax and I felt it as I walked around the museums and the Imperial place.

It's hard to explain what it feels like to be a foreigner walking alone in a foreign land. I was only going by the words from a guide book and curiosity. Never have I felt so lonely but at the same time glad to feel things for myself. It's a new thing for a change since I've walked around in other areas of Japan alone before but I could always go back to a place of comfort. With this I had no hotel room until 5pm. I had no place to call my own, no one to contact in case of emergency. Itís a very isolating feeling.

My first set of pictures is from my first day in Tokyo. I was in the not so popular part of town thus no pictures of people. Just of buildings.

Posted by thy at 11:15 AM | Comments (0)