First JournalI'm uploading this on my lunch break from training ~ 1:30 tuesday. I wrote it yesterday, I might not have time to upload all the photos I talked about there, but check out my photobucket dump anyways incase you missed something. I need to put a permanent link to that up here somewhere... back to work!
Okay I'm writing this at 3:30 Monday afternoon here. In advance, so I won't run outta time like on that last one, then I'll just hop on the net and copy-paste. Where do I start here? Our dorms are confusing,I'm not sure if they're really dorms, if Aeon owns them, or what, because it's right across the street from the training center, but I don't know how they could afford to own this building in the middle of town that's only used once a month. Who knows, anyways, I like Okayama. This is where my roommate is going to be stationed, too, so I wonder what that's like for him? It feels very Japanese here, that sounds like a no brainer, but... well, if you've played Shenmue, the whole city feels exactly like how that game looks. I'm not sure if Hiroshima will have this same feel, since it's so modern. Like everything is so packed, and random, and every inch of the city has something to look at, and is different. You'll know what I mean when you look at the photos.
Speaking of Hiroshima, I just want to get done with this week of training (starting tomorrow) so I can see my own city! It's driving me nuts. I want to move in. I'll overlap with the chick I'm replacing for a week, so depending on what they decide I or she will have to be in a motel for a week. I hope not...
So today we took a train for 320 yen, like 3 dollars, to Kurashiku. They have a few historic blocks, which were like the coolest thing I've ever seen. Mom, you are going to go ape shit here, there is SO much stuff to buy, and it's all so mysterious and cool you REALLY want to. We spent like 30 minutes in a snack shop, japanese snacks are really delicious. They're not just sugar, but wierd cake, bean paste type creations, I don't exactly know how to explain them. There are lots, and you could really become a connoiseur (if you can spell it, that is). Those steaming cake things that I have a picture of are manju ~ it was just in a stand and it's like soft doughey type something with this soy/bean paste in the middle. And they have them cooking in steam and it was DELICIOUS. Like the perfect little hot treat ~ it was 50 yen! (close to 50 cents). Beats the heck out of a gumball, eh? You could buy like 3 and make a lunch out of it.
Lunch ~ everyone eats obento for lunches, that means like...box lunch. But, you buy them in stores. They are made with very high quality food, and are sold at like corner stores, like 7-11. 7-11's are around here,and have some of the best fast food you can eat. There are little stands in 7-11s where fresh food is boilingand stuff to put in obento. Wierd.
Our room is cool, the shower/bath and toilet are in seperate rooms, which I love. The shower looks normal. There is a bathtub and then tile floor and sink and mirror. But actually the entire room works like a shower, so you fill up the tub with HOT water, there is like a temerature knob you can adjust so you can get it the exact temperature you want every time, and then you stand outside, shower like normal (Wash hair and body), then just soak soak in the tub like it's a hot-tub,and leave it for whoever's next. It's awesome.
Seriously, Cam, it's Shenmue. I want to get to Hiroshima bad.
We went to Izakaya last night, got octopus and all sorts of crazy things. No one here wants to ahve any drinks, though it's sort of a bummer. Then whenever we see booze for sale, everyone's like "Look, Dan! Alcohol!" And I'd really like to find out about the local alcohols, too. Shochu and Nihonshu are local japanese vodka-ish liquors. I had one cup last night, and it's sort of lemony, and light. You can just drink it straight on ice. I'm not sure exactly how strong it was, not 40% but stronger than wine. Maybe 60 proof or something? I think it's distilled from potatoes, anyhow. The Asahi here is good on tap, nothing to write home about but I guess I just did.
Well, I haven't even been here two days yet, but I don't feel nervous or freaked out, I just kinda want to move ahead, but I'll have to try and enjoy this week of training!
Also, the toilets plug into the wall, because the seats are heated. And since they're in their own room, a pair of slippers is kept in there (so you don't have to go barefoot, or wear bathroom slippers around the house/restaurant)and the sink is built-in on the top of the toilet, and turns on automatically when you flush. Ingenious. Also, they pass around packs of toilet paper on the street, because lots of public toilets dont have it, or have REALLY crappy TP. I'll send you a pack for your collection, Mom. Also, Dad, I haven't seen a single ATM. Not one. Anywhere. Telephones are in green booths, and you have to find special rare grey ones to call out of the country. ATMs will be the same. It's like they want the rest of the world to go away, here. And they use minidisks! So I can get a USB thing, and blank discs and use my player!!