Every February, Sapporo holds it’s biggest event: the Snow Festival. Hokkaido is Japan’s northernmost prefecture, and is famous for two things: snow and open space. It’s no wonder artists from around the world spend a whole month working on these massive masterpieces of snow. The main stretch of the park had huge snow carvings, one of them was even a life-size replication of a Thai building. Every year the festival attracts millions from around the world to see the amazing creations, then go skiing and enjoy famous Hokkaido food. Continue reading
This post is more for pictures, but perhaps you read my post from about a year ago when I arrived in Japan. Now, I’ve definitely collected more… things. It’s going to be hard to decide what to take and what to leave. Clearly, there is a lot to choose from. I may have bought a few too many books, also. I better start getting picky!
Despite being a really small apartment, for my brief duration here, it definitely felt like home and I made it my own. I’ll be sad to leave all it’s crafty strorage spaces and easiness to clean. It’s been fun, Leo Palace. If only you were wired for fiber-optics, we could have been better friends.
Tomorrow marks 5 weeks until I return home to visit friends for nearly 1 month. 5 weeks. That’s just over a month. That’s 3 weeks at First school and 2 weeks at Second school. That’s 5 more Wednesday classes. That’s almost a year from leaving Florida.
And where am I now?
People like to ask me “Has living in Japan changed you?” My answer is a distinct “Yes.” The natural follow up question is “In what ways?” To which I never have a response. I know I’ve changed. I can feel it in the way I look at others, in the way that others look at me. I can feel it in my body language, my responses, my decisions. I’ve definitely changed. But in what way, I don’t know. Continue reading
Two weekends ago, I dropped by Moriya to cheer on the ALTs running in the Moriya Half Marathon. Being a runner myself, it was really fun to check out the running scene in Japan and, for the first time, be on the sidelines! Just watching them made me tired, but I managed to snap a few cute pictures of the crew giving it their all. Paul ran the fastest (of the group) at 1 hour 27 minutes… wow. Second place to Greg, third to Becky the Banana. Good work guys!
I’ve just returned from a fun-filled 4-day weekend in Sapporo at the Snow Festival with none other than Becky the Banana. I’d be lying if I said I’ve recuperated already.
So, apologies in advance, but today I’m just going to post a link to, by far, one of the funniest articles I’ve read in a long, long time. I would call this “not safe for work” as you’ll surely be unable to contain your laughter. For those of you who don’t live in Japan (or never have) I’m afraid it might not be as funny but it’s sure to get you giggling on this groggy Tuesday. Mind you, it’s been passed around a bit, so if you’ve already enjoyed this piece forgive me for being so unoriginal today.
Without further ado, the truth about living in Japan:
My life has been hectic as of late, and keeping up with my blog has been something I squeeze in when I can. Recently, the lovely Mary Sarudzayi of the blog For Zimbabwe nominated me for a Blogger Award and I’m completely honored. It made my day and inspired me to always keep writing, at least someone is finding my crazy life interesting!
Please drop by her blog and check it out, it too is a fantastic one, focused on the development of politics in Zimbabwe. Whether or not politics are your thing, it’s a big world we live in and exploring it virtually (or physically) is part of the human existence. Understanding other places with an open-mind and an adventurous spirit can only bring us closer together.
After the jump, check out the blogs I nominated and 7 interesting facts about me!
Every year in the states my friends, family, etc. get flu shots. Every year, I turn up my flu-resilient nose at them and refuse shots or even daily cautions. I’m a snob about growing up on orange juice and having the immune system of an alligator (google it). Typical Floridian, the flu isn’t a huge deal for us as we have warm weather and enough vitamin C to cure scurvy and have enough left over to make juice.
And then I experienced flu season in Japan. Continue reading
Every time I chat with friends, I always talk about the magical “conbini.” Even in Japanese, the word for convenience store is konbiniansu sutoa but they often shorten this to conbini. In typical Japanglish fashion, we native English speakers have also adopted this fashionably short word. Often, in Japanese, names of stores or restaurants are shortened to just a few syllables. For example: Starbucks becomes staabaa, McDonald’s becomes Makku, and my personal favorite, First Kitchen becomes fahkin (say it out loud). Continue reading
After what feels like 5 months, I finally got paid. We get paid 1 month delayed from the last day of the month (does that make sense?). So, I get paid for December work at the end of January. Basically, it’s a long. time.
After having a bit too much fun during winter vacation, I found myself eating eggs and protein bars for three weeks straight. Continue reading
After a long day of on-going training on Saturday, a group of us decided to stay to play in Tokyo for a little bit. We shopped in Ginza and quickly visited the Apple store, then headed to Tokyo station to try out a Mexican restaurant and celebrate Taiki’s 21st!
I’ve eaten Mexican food in Japan before and it’s all been less than impressive. I realize now that it’s a very American thing. Well, for obvious reasons, it’s Mexican too. You know what I mean.
So, my hopes were high, but my fears were that it would be same old “Japan mexican.” Continue reading