OKAY... I have indeed been pretty lazy with this blogging thing... no excuses

So the last month has been quite uneventful... lots of work and studying. Pretty stressful =(

nah... that was a lie. the past month has been pretty amazing in terms what I have seen and what I have do- I went on a 2 week clubbing streak, climbed Mount Fuji and watched some amazing fireworks. Not to mention watching the Olympics and cheering for China... too bad most of China's best events are quiet boring. Weightlifting, shooting, gymnastics... yea... not saying they aren't hard but that is nothing like watching the 100 dash or the 4X100 swimming relays.
The opening ceremony was great and also the closing one was too. ( Though I have to admit that they were pretty long... I feel asleep a couple of times waiting for the athletes to file into the stadium)

Lets skip mount Fuji till next time, and talk about Austin's stay before he left for Kyoto- We agreed that Austin and I should never go drinking alone because we will just end up getting pissed off at each other and fight. Left him wondering on the streets of Tokyo till the crack of dawn because I was just had to leave to get rest before work. I haven't had such a tight schedule since like middle school...

9:00 wake up
9:30-6:30 work
7-10ish drinking
11-3 or 4 Am Random Club

Live is tough over here, and pricey too.... A beer is about the same price of a meal around here. Granted that there isn't Natty Light, but only fresh tapped beer. Tonight's the first night in awhile that I came back before 10... maybe because i need to clean my room since my folks are gonna come inspected my life... Gotta hide away the bottles and vacuum...

Anyways, school doesn't start for another month and I'll being working till the day before. A salary boy's life is quite nice over here, if only they would pay me a bit more. Drinking costs a lot.. so does food-

It's gonna weird going back to Swarthmore... I got the first weekend events email- I felt really surreal reading it, since my life here in tokyo is so much different than what it would be if I went back to Swarthmore.

Btw, got a Korean book today... in Japanese... feel like I should be doing something more productive than sightseeing in the city =P

I will try to be more diligent this month on....


Bank Account-

In order to get paid for my job, I was required to open a Japanese bank account-

And that's what I did for the second day-

First, you need to have an alien registration card...
Now this was easy, you need a picture, your passport and an appropriate visa-

Next you need a identification paper telling the bank that you are a foreigner and that you don't have a personal stamp thingy- Apparently, they don't like signing things and every family has their own little stamp with their family name or something- You could have it specially made or buy it at the hyakuyen shop (dollar store).

Now, once you have all the required information... finding a bank is the hardest part. For most banks in japan, you have to have been living in japan for at least 6 months- my working visa only said 6 months... damn it- Got reject by 3 banks before I finally remember that the company actually told me to try Citibank. Took 3 hours of walking around to finally find a branch that will let me get my crap done. This is mainly caused by the fact that I actually went to Citibank's main office building 50 mins away from the station that was closest to it- You would think that if you go to the main office they must have some type of service counter, right? NOPE.... damn it $#^$&%(*&&*()@(%#*^&...

But finally- after 6 hours of adventuring around Tokyo in 34 degrees weather, I got my stupid bank account... only to find out that city bank has exactly 103 ATM machines in the whole of Tokyo. WOW- I'm think this adventure for the bank is not gonna end any time soon....


Moving IN

WEEKEND!!!!!!!!!! Finally.... I have been in Japan for about 2 weeks now, and life is starting to catch up to me. This month has gone by pretty fast, going to Beijing, waiting for my visa, starting work, blah blah blah- I have finally settled into my room in OOMORI Tokyo, and have began my internship working for Hartford life insurance doing data mining. So many things have happened in the past two weeks that I don't know where to begin... well.... lets start from day one...

I arrived at the Tokyo international airport on the 20th of july at about 3 o'clock in the afternoon. It is called the Tokyo international but it is situated in the prefecture next to Tokyo lol. It takes about 1 hour to get the city by train or about 2.30 hours to get there by bus. Since I've been to Tokyo before a couple of times, I knew exactly where to go and what to do, so there aren't any adventure stories about getting to the city. So I got through customs, got my HUGEASS suitcase that weight about 20? Kilos (multiple that by 2.2-2.3 to get pounds for you American folks), got a ticket and hopped on to the bus bound for Shinjuku. Shinjuku in the heart of Tokyo and it is also has the famous crossing that is often shown with any TV program talking about Japan. The train station handles about 3 million peeps a day, and works like a giant maze (trapping another quarter million). Anyways, this place was nowhere near where I lived but I had to go and get my keys and sign my apartment contract.

After I got my apartment stuff settled I jumped on to a taxi and headed straight for my shared apartment... which was directly across the city from where I had been. The ride took like 5000 yen which is about $50 USD..... but not even god was gonna make me hail my heavy suitcase to the train station and go there by train.

My room is pretty nice, probably the biggest in the whole apartment, and has a huge window with a great street view. I was quite satisfied with everything, except they didn't give me anything that I needed to live with.... no blankets, no covers, no pillow... basically all i had was a frame and a mattress. Mission 1: get crap. The building itself is quite well situated and there are quite a few department stores and dollar shops... so i cruised around there to pick up the things that I needed.

Funny things happened while i was trying to find everything. I mispronounced the Japanese word for 'pillow (makura)' as the word for 'tuna (maguro)'... should of seen the guys face when i was trying to animated the action of sleeping on a pillow but actually saying tuna tuna at the same time. In the end, pillow purchased.

Everything else was okay. I couldn't find a blanket, so I ended up getting a very large towel instead, didn't quite understand what i was thinking... Anyways, I got most of the basic stuff that i need for the night and I headed back to my den.

Later, I found out that my pillow case was actually a size smaller then my pillow... so my solution: try and stuff the pillow into the smaller case.

Result: didn't work... a quarter couldn't fit into the case and it was so stuffed that I felt like I was sleeping on a book-

Since I had been up since 7 am, I was ready to catch up with some Zs. So I said goodnight to some hallmates that I met and retreated back to my room. As I started to change to go to bed, I noticed something odd.... My room has a huge window facing the streetings... with buildings across from me. The view was great and all BUT they didn't give me any curtains. Whoops... *was about to take off my pants*... couldn't do anything now, it's 11 and all the stores are closed =( So I put my shirt back on and got some shorts, turned off the light and pasted out.

I have managed to steal a double mattress from the hallway and mount it on my single bed and the ledge by the giant window- it worked out fine except I can't sleep with just my boxers on until i get some curtains. I didn't want to scare the old people living across the street from me or the people that are walking on the street and happened to look up at my building-


New Laptop~ lalala


So my dad suddenly decided to take me computer shopping after my doctor's appointment today. We spent a total of 20 mins in a computer market in CWB ( you don't have to know where that is exactly) and I choose a black Mac book!!! The 2nd Mac in 2 years... damn I waste too much money =( screw having children, I dont think I'll be able to earn enough to support myself o_O

Sooooooo, according to my calculations, I have managed to switch 5 laptops in the past 6 years...
My last one was a white mac book which I bought during spring break freshman year with cash lol- Should of seen the look on the person's face when I said "um....I am paying in cash....".-----> O_O (yes, big eyes)

The laptop was working great through summer until CJ's away party before winter break. I woke up the next day with my laptop swiming in some sort of coke drink on my desktop (knew I should of hid it somewhere). Well... surprisingly it still works, and I have been using this waterlogged (humm... maybe "cokelogged") piece of equipment for the entire second semester. It became a desktop, because the battery won't charge anymore and so it has to be plugged to a power source 24-7. You have no idea how frustrating it is with this computer going off randomly, especially when you happen to be typing away a paper or raiding in Azeroth and the screen suddenly turns dark.

I don't regret throwing the party though. But I should have been more careful my electronic appliances... thank god my sound system survived... they were right next to my laptop-

I wouldn't have minded the no battery part that much if it wasn't for the mac book's new power cord thingy. This new magnetic power plug was meant to... umm... prevent your computer from being dragged off the table when someone accidentally trips on the wire. But, when your laptop has no battery at all, this new mechanism doesn't seem to be that brilliant of an idea anymore. |no power connection| + |no battery| = |no power| = |just lost everything that I have been working on for past couple of hours|. I'd rather the laptop be dragged on to the floor then the whole GOD D*** system shutting off suddenly. And SOMEONE (actually it's only one person, and it's not me) always manages to trip on the power cord, even if I am deliberately place the wire out of her way. *devastating to the soul*

Well... at least I developed a habit of saving a lot... like every 15 mins lol-
New vs Old
I should have gotten a windows machine or something, but I figured I would end up buying new computer games and other random crap.... so yea... and the black mac book looks pretty cool =)

Most importantly though, I need a new computer since I would be working in Japan soon. I don't want any power outages when I am inputting endless lists of data on excel or writing something boring on word or anything else they make me do on the job. (Please don't let be making copies and coffee...)

Lets see how long this new one will last... I figured with the badass looks and all, it should survive for at least 2 years (give or take a year).

Anyways, I also posted two random pictures that I found while I was clearing through my old laptop- No nude pictures or anything, so don't get excited...

The Harbor
This is the view of Hong Kong's famous Victoria Harbor from my window =) It used to be better, but some genius (or geniuses) recently decided to build a really really tall hotel right in front of the building that I am in, leaving me with only half of the original harbor view. The area has no tourist attractions nor is it famous for anything.
Arghhhhh... looks like I'll have to get rich and move to somewhere higher up- ocean view is important... makes you want to dance-

Battle Baby or Superman/women baby?

So I met this fierce-looking baby while I was studying in Japan last summer. (Forgot he or she, so I think I'll use "it")... It's dad is the preacher for the Tenrikyo Shrine (天理教) in Hakodate, Hokkaido Japan. The baby was situated on top of the cushion because it couldn't crawl or really do anything yet, except for lifting it's head up. And since it's head was too heavy, the head just falls on to the cushion whenever the baby becomes too tired lol. My tomodachis (friends) all agreed that this thing was kawaisugiru (go figure the word out. Hint: it's japanese)- Couldn't take the baby back with me though... their god might smite me =X

Alright... 3 more weeks left...
still got a lot of random things to take care of... AKA my working visa... argh...

Oh noes, a hurricane is coming to Hong Kong tonight-

combat time!

Movies and articles

It has been brought to my attention that I have indeed spelt grammar wrong in my self intro... well.... yea... I couldn't find the spellcheck button ( I always try to remember to spellcheck, because I KNOW that my "engrish" needs improvement)

With Andrew in Istanbul, Austin preparing to leave for Japan and Aly travelling with her family in Spain (wow... I didn't even notice it till now, you are all As).... I feel like I am wasting my life away bit by bit staying in my Hong Kong home, sleeping 11-ish hours a day and wondering aimlessly around the city. Probably not that bad... but still....

Anyhow, I have so much free time on my hand that I have been reading a lot of Time Magazines and random books, as well as watching TV dramas (both Japanese and English) and an assortment of random movies.

Reaper (Season 1)

Talks about a guy called Sam, whom on his 21st birthday, finds out that his parents sold his soul to the devil and has to work for devil by capturing escaped souls from hell. I know... I know... this plot seems to be old, but I find the characters to be pretty entertaining and series to be quite well-filmed. ( CJ should add this to his list of TV episodes that he watch during his boring year at swarthmore without me)

Kung Fu Panda
Man... this movie is hilarious... The first 5 minutes of the film (or the introduction part) was the funniest thing I've ever seen with Panda ending the whole thing saying "there is no charge for awesomeness, or attractiveness" which exactly how I feel about myself..... yea i get satisfaction from children movies but so what? If you have 90 mins to spare and/or have little youngsters around you, this movie could be a good choice.

Definitely Probably? I don't know the exact name...

Love story. Chick flick? I don't know... but i enjoyed it. I think the actors/actresses were all pretty good in the movie but the plot is a bit old and corny. But as Aly knows it, I like corny movies AKA star dust and A.I lol .....so my taste is questionable.....


This is multi-lingual cause I want to practice some of my Chinese and Japanese from time to time. If you can't understand it.... it's alright, probably you didn't miss much=p

Just finished the latest issue of the Times ( I don't know why I typed "Tables" the first time), which had a special report on games that is worth reading (in my opinion). With the Olympics drawing near and such, I like these kinds of articles that don't show how political international games have become.Btw, did you know that South Korea has coverage of computer-game tournaments 24-7 on national TV and that it computer gaming is called e-sports? Absolutely amazing... think I can convince my parents to let me change academic paths now?... probably not... but these gamers in S.Korea get paid $100000 a year to play games =O

I guess I should be glad that I have all this free time to read and do random stuff at home (well... since Aly has been complaining about traveling too much....).

Only a few weeks left before I venture off to Japan to start my internship and my exchange program.

So...in the meantime....頑張ろう!!!


I can't believe I am doing this.. Let's see how long this will last

Hello. Nihao. Konnichiwa.
Since everyone around has gotten into this blogging business, I thought I might as well try it out.
As some of you might know, I am planning on spending my entire junior year away from Swarthmore. I'll be interning and then doing an exchange program called AIKOM at Tokyo University.

Shit... this is kinda weird... I feel like I am talking to myself, but anyways =/

Anyhow, my internship doesn't start until the 14th of July, and so I have been spending most of my time at home in Hong Kong. Go ASIA!! The food home is great, no more pasta nights and happy wok general (Tso's, Gao's, whatever variation they have out there) for a long while. I think I am still sick from pasta though, I feel nauseous thinking about it, no offense to sharples (did I spell that right?) or anything. It's just that pasta nights twice a week for 2 years has really shortened my life, a bit.

My internship is going be from the 14th of July till the 30th September giving me exactly half a day before my study abroad program starts (October 1st, if I know my months right.... there shouldn't be 31st of September, right?) I'll be doing data analysis and research and development at an American life insurance company called Hartford Life Insurance. Apparently they are pretty big in America, but they just started in Japan 5 years ago. According to what they told me, they are still pretty small in Japan with, I quote, 'only 900 people'. I feel pretty lucky being able to land this internship, so I am gonna have to try hard and show off some Swarthmore style working skills. You know, like 16 shots in an hour and half and things of that sort- It'll be an interesting experience, so wish me luck, yea? Don't need to pray or anything fancy like that, a wish will be fine.

I gotta say, not being at Swarthmore for an entire year is going to be very weird. I'm sure gonna miss all the adventures and what not, for example: the blackout nights (not saying that's not gonna happen in Japan, but still). Studying will be missed too, but not as much as the pizzas and chicken wings ordered in midst of studying.

Oh well- I know my liver is probably going to hell this year (byebye liver), just like my kidneys- but still, one life, right? who wants a drink?

If you all really have some time and spare cash, you should take this chance and come visit Asia AKA visit me in Tokyo. I can't afford buying you all tickets, but I can offer a place to stay I guess. So come and I'll take you around.