Sunday, July 30, 2006

13th vlog - tanashi

click for video, 15mb, quicktime, its not the 14th vlog its the 13th... ignore the file name byaaaach!
Yeah, its been awhile. I heard the cries of the people who didnt want to spend the time downloading boring video logs, so my video blogging took a lunch brake. But I was thinking about it today, and if you dont want to download one of my video blogs, just dont do it. You dont have to download this, its your choice! I'm going to continue to videoblog from time to time, when the urge strikes me. In fact, I plan to upgrade to even larger files as soon as I get my hands on a better camera. Big! Big! Oh yeah oh yeah ... So anyway, about this vlog... I was walking in Tanashi with Kayo and Mari and I decided to do a sudden attack of nonsensical video blogging. So here it is, a blog walking the streets of Japan. We get to see a taxi, my friends hiding from the camera and someone ride past us on a bike. And thats (mostly) me talking in drunk sounding Japanese. Oh, the excitement!

Saturday, July 29, 2006

on my way to Japan

Pan Star Dream - boat to and from KoreaI was having one of those love the world moments on my way back to Japan. That was mixed in with my grumpy reaction to most service people in Korea. (Something I noticed always happens to me while in Korea for some reason.) The train ride back to Busan (Pusan) was brilliant, lush green hills with slender bridges, rushed past my window and before I could write more than a couple of poems about it, I was already on my boat back to Japan. Last time, I couldnt get on to the main deck because the door from budget class was locked. This time I figured out that the door from first class was open, and I walked around the deck. It was wonderful, a hot summer sun with a strong ocean breeze. Perfect blend. And endless deep blue sea, endless, litterally dark blue stretching to every horizon. Standing up on the deck with the wind in my hair, I thought silly thoughts about how everyone becomes a foreigner when on international boats, because there is no imaginary boxes countaing our countries when far out at sea. Later that night I couldnt sleep, and I went out on deck again. The air was still warm, the wind was still just right, but now the stars were out. I've seen movies of people out at sea with brilliant stars but I thought it was a bit of movie magic, but its more than that. The stars, with out interference from cities and people, were sparkling solid chunks in the sky. They litterally looked like frozen fireworks hanging in the sky in a interwoven mess. I leaned against a life vest box and just looked up for a long time. Pretty stuff. Like I said I was in a love-the-world mood, which didnt change as I got on my bus to Tokyo (I decided to take the daytime bus because it was only $15 more expensive and I could sleep in my own bed if I did that) and it was so fun to watch the countryside roll past. The sun was out still, glowing on the endless bushes. In places I could see the wind blow patterns in rice fields, as we rushed along on huge highways cut litterally through mountains. Good times. Today I went in and got my assignment at work. I am stationed at Kita-senju. (I'm using army lingo if you didnt notice, pun intended.) I start work the day after tomorrow. Here I go!

Tuesday, July 25, 2006

in korea

fruit market, click for bigger versionIt seems like I have finally got my visa. I went to the Japanese Embassy today and the application process was very fast. I filled out a form, stood in line behind an angry Iranian (who Japan wouldnt give an entry permit) and when it was my turn I gave my paperwork to the woman and I was told to come back the next day. Easy as that. One thing I noticed is the Iranian guy and the French guy in front of me all said "thank you" to her in Japanese when they were finished. I noticed that she was Korean, so I thought that was kind of odd, so when it was my turn I said thank you in Korean when I was finished and she seemed to appreciate that. The picture above is an old woman selling fruit at a small station in the middle of nowhere near where I got my paperwork package. I will be a working zombie again soon!

Saturday, July 22, 2006

youth hostel thoughts

Click for bigger version. Evan in a restraunt.Its weird to stay in this youth hostel again. All the other times I've been here. (Including the three months before I worked here.) It blends all together, and being here seems to mix with the other times. This now is like the other nows (I mean, the other times that felt like now that arent now but were now) ...all very tripy ideas I guess. Meeting people, exchanging thoughts, moments passing.

While I was here Evan came from Japan to hang out. (He can be seen in the above "artsy blur" picture with my friend Young Im. Shes the one who was getting married last year, and so I waited in Korea to go to her wedding.) It was fun to hang out with Evan and show him around Seoul. I had a lot of fun, lets hope he did too.

I still havent got my Japanese working visa (my reason for coming here) so I hope that happens so. I dont have much time left.

Thursday, July 13, 2006

going on a boat

In not too surprising because of the season news: its HOT! About half of my balcony plants have passed away due to the extreme heat. Often my little one room apartment turns in to an oven and starts to cook me. I can open my windows to improve airflow but its hot outside too. I can use the air conditioner (or as they say around these parts "aircon") to cool down my room, and it works magically, but that thing sucks energy like a depressed alcoholic drinks and I dont want a big bill. I gotta keep reminding myself I prefer too hot over too cold. In other news, I'm about to take a boat from Japan to Korea later this week to make my Japan work visa. A freaking boat as my mode of international travel. Cool Cool!
Some cool links:
Some of you (can you have "some" when talking about just two regular blog visitors?!) might know I'm a big fan of B movies. Well, check out the movie trailer for Negadon (via Japanese language page) The Godzilla (gojira, for you true diehard fans) influence is very clear. It also has gundam influence, and if you are like "huh whats gundam?" then let me say that gundam robot geeks are locally equivalent to starwars geeks in the supposed Western world. Nonetheless, I will buy this on DVD when it comes out. Without a doubt.
And how about a link showcasing my linguistic geekyness now? Personally I prefer the sound of the Cantonese dialect of Chinese, but mainland Mandarin Chinese (Putonghua) is kind of cool too. And how about a 100% free multimedia site designed to teach the world Chinese, brought to you by the Chinese Ministry of Propaganda, my bad joke, I mean the Ministry of Education (is there much difference between the two?) It might seem like I'm taking the air out of this site (, but I'm not trying to. Cool stuff. Click Chengo for multimedia fun. Quick review: when I played with it the site was slow and a little glitchy, but the education methods were innovative and captivating. No one would argue the usefulness of Chinese in the future (well, someone might but I think they are silly so I'm not counting them!) I will be a heavy user of that Linese site once I get a computer again.
All original content CC 2002-2012 BY NC SA - first design from dilarangmelarang altered by neonvirus and thunderbunny.