Category Archives: Japan

Three days and four nights

I arrived I departed for Japan at 5:50 a.m. Tuesday, Sept. 25. About 20 hours or so later, I arrived at what will be my home for the next year. It was quite a long trip.

Since arriving, I’ve explored my area a bit: I registered with the local ward (requirement), met up with two good friends of mine, learned where the local supermarket is, and watched Korean dramas subtitled in Japanese.

Hopefully soon I can post a pic or something on here again.

From waiting and doing little to super busy

Aug. 30 has come and gone, and with that I have been accepted into ARC Academy. That’s right, I’m moving back to Japan.

It’s been a long time coming. Upon coming across Micaela’s channel on YouTube, I learned that Japanese language schools exist and that I want to attend one. Since that time, I’ve been saving money. Lots and lots of money.

I’ll arrive in Japan on Sept. 26, attend an entrance ceremony for school on Oct. 3, and my first true day of class starts Oct. 9. It’s Sept. 7 as I write this, so I really have less than three weeks before I leave Texas.

My excitement is growing each day. Last week I submitted payment for the first six months of tuition, this week I purchased my one-way ticket to Tokyo, and next week I get to submit paperwork to the Japanese consulate to get my visa.

And today I planned out the things I need to do every day through the day I leave. I can’t remember the last time I’ve felt so busy, but it should be fun!

Basically, I actually have a reason not to update for about a month on here. Though once I get set up in Japan, I hope to start making videos and posting them up on YouTube, writing more posts here, and uploading more pics over at my smugmug.

The saddest thing about all of this: I don’t think my spotify account will work when I’m in Japan. =(

Making the first other step; online job application sytems all SUCK

A major hurdle to my getting to Japan this autumn is saving up money. While I’ve saved up more than half of what I’d like to, I won’t quite meet my “comfortable” goal. That is, able to live in Japan comfortably without penny pinching while I’m over there. I’ve been telling myself and others for a few months now that I plan to look for a part-time job. But that’s just it–I’ve been talking about it and not doing it. I’ve taken the first step. I applied at a few different places last night.

Since coming back from Japan in 2010, I’ve applied to many, many different places online. And almost every single online application is NOT foreign country friendly. Even Taleo, an online job application and recruitment tool, is horrible about it. Let’s go over the problems I (and I’m sure countless other people in the world) have faced: Continue reading Making the first other step; online job application sytems all SUCK

Annual trip to Japan

2007 – Made my first trip to Japan. I visited a friend, and he acted as an interpreter and tour guide.
2008 – Visited my former Japanese teacher and his wife. Daytime I was on my own; at night we partied.
2009 – Went with friends from Texas where I acted as tour guide and a poor excuse for an interpreter.
2010 – Moved to Yamaguchi, taught English for a while, resigned, job hunted in Tokyo for two months.
2011 – Didn’t visit.

This year, I’m visiting Tokyo for a week with Rainman. I’ll again act as a guide and interpreter. Rainman has never visited Japan before. We’ll meet up with many of my friends, go sightseeing, drinking, karaoke, etc.

That’s one purpose of the trip. The other is to visit a Japanese language school I’m applying to. Located in Shibuya, the plan is to work this year, save money, then begin classes in October 2012. The purpose is as it sounds: to study the Japanese language in an immersive environment. Classes are taught in Japanese, I’d live in Japan, and it’s looking like I’d live with a Japanese family.

My goal with the school is to improve my Japanese from the paltry JLPT N5 level to JLPT N2. A tough goal I feel, but something doable.

Give Japanese dramas a chance

Densha Otoko


There’s a Japanese website well-known in Japan called 2channel. It’s an anonymous message board home to the heartwarming story of Densha Otoko (電車男, Train Man). The original Japanese story can be found here. It’s about a socially inept nerd, or otaku, who saves a woman on a train one night. Their relationship develops while the man relays his adventures in dating to the message board.

It’s been made into a book, manga and TV series. I first came to know the story around 2006. In fact, I think it’s the first Japanese drama I ever watched. Continue reading Give Japanese dramas a chance