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Zzzzzzz......So, I was linked to this captioned image by a friend and just had to share it. It sums up quite nicely what I often struggle with the most while studying, falling asleep! XD (Click on the image for the full-size version.)

STUDYING [I Can Has Cheezburger?]



No, I haven’t fallen off the face of the planet, nor has my interest in blogging here waned. I’ve just been busy doing alot of studying. ;)
It’s time for midterms in the Asian Studies Program here at Kansai Gaidai, so even though I do have a few things I’d like to throw up for posts, right now I need to dedicate my time to studying. Thankfully they’ll be over with by the middle of next week. Wish me luck! ;)

– Stephen

Chocolate bar Engrish


So, I saw this chocolate bar down at the 99 store (everything there is 99 yen before tax), and just had to pick it up because of the wonderful Engrish on it. ;)
The wrapper says:

There is no accounting for taste,
so choose your own.
Experiencing deliciousness
made me a slave to taste.

Whoever wrote this probably has no idea of the negative connotations of “There is no accounting for taste,” which would seem to insinuate that the customer is an uncultured idiot. ;) Not even remotely what they meant, I’m sure, but that’s one of the things that makes Engrish so charming and funny, right? ^_^

McDonalds in Japan


I’ve only been to the on-campus McDonald’s so far, but one thing I’ve noticed is that the food I’ve had there so far has actually looked something like the pictures on the menu, not something hastily slapped together and squished.

First Kyoto Trip


A bunch of Japanese lanterns hanging in a building at a Shinto shrineSo, my first Kyoto trip was at the beginning of the month, on September 4th, to be exact.
Of course, at the time, I was still finding my legs, as it were. In other words, I still didn’t quite understand how to get around Japan very well, never having lived in a place with anything close to resembling a decent mass-transit system. ;)



As part of moving over to a WordPress blog, I also setup a Gallery installation, where I will post pictures taken, with commentary on some of them. I do have posts on that Kyoto trip from a while back and my trip to Tokyo for TGS to write, which I hope to get up soon. Hopefully I can also get to posting more regularly. ^^;

Thanks for your patience!
– Stephen

New Home


Welcome to the new home of my blog. I’ve imported most of my posts from my Blogger blog to this new one, and will be editing them for formatting, etc. Having used WordPress on other blogs, the limitations of Blogger irked me, and I finally had enough and setup this new blog on this domain. n.n

The dates and times for the imported posts may be a little bit off, mostly because of timezone settings I hadn’t configured properly before importing. ^^;

Hopefully I can get that Kyoto trip blog entry up now. ;)

– Stephen

Opening Ceremony


Library / Multimedia HallSo the 2009-2010 school year opening ceremony was Thursday afternoon/evening. It was held in the Multimedia Hall in the library building that I mentioned in my last post. To the left is a picture of that building taken from the 4th floor of the CIE (Center for International Education) building.


Busy Week


This week has been quite busy, with orientation meetings and paperwork to complete.

Still hot and humid, though thankfully we were able to get the A/C working in my room not too long after my last post.
The campus is about a 20 minute walk from the dorms, so I’m getting in alot of walking lately. I may consider investing in a bike, but we’ll have to see about that. A bike helmet is one of the things I forgot to bring with me. n.n;
Here’s a shot of the fountain in an open courtyard on campus.

The building in the background is the main administration building for this campus. Both Japanese and international students come to this campus. To the right of this picture is the Center for International Education (CIE), where most of the Admin and Faculty for the Asian Studies Program have their offices.

To the left is the library and what is referred to as the “Multimedia Hall,” where alot of the aforementioned meetings are taking place.
A trip to Kyoto is planned for this Friday. I’m hoping to participate in that, and bring back lots of pictures. Anyway, bye for now, until my next post. ^_^
– Stephen



So, I arrived in Japan safe and sound yesterday, and got unpacked. It’s hot and very humid here. It’s only about 80 degrees Fahrenheit, but quite humid. Haven’t figured out how to get the A/C unit in my bedroom working yet (it might just not be working at all right now).

Last night we went as a group to a local convenience store for food and such. I picked up some instant noodles, and had a bowlful last night. Was pretty good, and even though I couldn’t really read the instructions easily, it was pretty much the same process as I’d used with instant noodles in the States.

After eating, I went to bed and slept like a log through the night, waking up about 9 AM with the bright sun streaming through the window. To sleep on I have a futon which is actually quite comfortable. The futons are set out on the middle area of the room, which has tatami mats.

Today, I worked on catching up on email and calling friends and family to say hi and let them know how I was doing. In the afternoon, we went to the electronics store (電気屋), where people bought stuff like network cables for their PCs, digital cameras, etc. I personally just looked around and didn’t buy anything.
After the electronics store, we headed to a sushi restaurant just around the corner from the store. It was one of those restaurants with the sushi on a belt and you just grab what you want off of the belt. You could also special order stuff from the touchscreen at the table.
There were two tracks, the lower one was a belt that carried already prepared sushi around to the different tables arrayed along each of the betlts. The upper one was a track for a little carrier to run up and down, delivering special orders. Unfortunately, I didn’t get any pictures of the inside, so for now, the above description will have to suffice.
It was quite fun, wish something like this was practical and at least somewhat wide-spread in the US. The plates of sushi I had were all 105 yen, which made for a nice, somewhat cheap meal.
Anyway, I hope those that are reading this blog enjoy it, and I’ll try and make at least one entry per day, if I can. Thanks!
– Stephen