Monday, May 31, 2010

Goodbye Tokyo

I have about 3 days left in Tokyo and I thought I should finish the way I started:

Things I will miss about Tokyo (in no particular order):

1. sushi

2. the convenience

3. the shopping

4. karaoke

5. the people, my god, the people

Things I am excited about at home (again, in no particular order):

1. mom's cooking
2. real nature
3. my bike
4. my bathtub
5. the people, my god, the people

Thursday, May 20, 2010


The parents have come to visit and I've been doing a bit of traveling and sight-seeing with them. Check out the photos of our trip to Hiroshima, Miyajima, Kyoto, and Nara:

Dad hilariously trying to figure out Japanese TV in the hotel

Hiroshima, the a-bomb dome

School children paying tribute to the kids lost in Hiroshima

Miyajima, the floating tori

Gion, Kyoto

The holyhock festival in Kyoto

4km of tori at Fushimi Inari Shrine

Kiyomizu love-stone

Sunday, May 9, 2010

My Last Days of Work

Yesterday was my last day of work and it was a bit painful saying goodbye! I got flowers and gifts and letters and one of my students even came in to say goodbye even though she didn't have a lesson (it turned into a big cry-fest).

I had no idea I would become so attached to all my students and coworkers! Whenever I travel I make temporary friends who I keep in touch with and have a good time with but I know inevitably we will all go home and so I don't let myself get to into any deep relationships. I came to Japan thinking of it just like all my other trips but longer...but Tokyo turned into a home.

After work we had a karaoke farewell party with the staff in Ikebukuro but I'll likely stop by there to give a proper (more sober) goodbye before I leave, so those goodbyes were not that bad.

Here's a few photos from the last days:

Flowers I got from one of my regular students
(in my make-shift thermos/vase)

More gifts

The amazing scrapbook Akina (my fav student/friend) made for me

Karaoke with the Akabane staff

Manager, counselor, and instructor

Adrian being witty again

Friday, April 30, 2010


I just got back from a (too) short vacation in the southern tropical islands of Japan, Okinawa. I spent a day in Naha, the main city, then I headed out to a tiny island off the coast (Zamami jima) and spent 3 days relaxing and doing next to nothing. Check out some of the crazy photos of this strange and wonderous place:

Pig face for sale in the Naha market

Awamori - Okinawan liquor. Yes those are real snakes

Goya chyanpuru: one of the local dishes.
Basically, crazy bitter gourd (goya) stir-fried with pork, egg, and other veggies

Okinawan souvenirs - frog purses. Yes, those are real frogs.

Vacation calls for excessive desserts

Japanese style room in Zamami Jima.
Wicked awesome hotel, but I could have told you that by just looking at the name: Joy Joy

Furuzamami beach

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Mount Fuji etc.

A few photos from the last few days:

Came across a wedding at Meji Jingu shrine

Met up with my friend Will at a crazy
dungeon/science/haunted house/prison izakaya (pub).
He's mixing his drink.

Mount Fuji hiking trail

Shrine at the base of Mount Fuji

Hiked to the First Base Camp

Pooped on the train after a couple days of hiking