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7/31/09 ~ Friday 6:14 pm - Tokyo ~ 5:14 am - NY
Status: relaxed ~ Listening to: Rondo - On/Off (Vampire Knight Guilty OP) Listen or Save
In convention style, I will have a group of links to my weekend after the weekend is over. ^.^ But first, the above has info about today. I went to JR Central Towers and Nagoya Castle. I was suppose to go to the aquarium...but decided not to after my cosplay emergency. ^^; Anyway, it's kinda drizzling out and I want to take it easy. The link is picture heavy as I was pretty trigger happy at Nagoya Castle. ^.^ Enjoy!
another BL anime? love it!
Arigato to Pearl-chan for pointing me to this piece of news. Odagiri Hotaru-sensei's manga, Uragiri wa Boku no Namae o Shitteiru will be an anime. Of course, my question is how many episodes and tv or ova? I love Odagiri-sensei's artwork and am eager to see how this will translate onto the screen. *dances around the hotel room*
more Dead Fantasy! yay!
Mony Oumi has been working overtime! First, there was the major release of Dead Fantasy 3 which I posted about on 7/15...and now Dead Fantasy IV and Dead Fantasy V is out already. I'm so happy we didn't have to wait another year for these installments. My only comment echoes another who posted on gametrailers: I've never seen Tifa so bloody before. Wow.... O.o Definitely watch all of them if you haven't already since for an amateur, the graphics and choreography are fantastic.
7/30/09 ~ Thursday 4:05 pm - Tokyo ~ 3:05 am - NY
Status: busy ~ Listening to: AC running
I watched 07 Ghost ep. 17 subbed...and the main thing I picked out that I didn't while watching the raws was Bastion's words near the end of the episode. FYI, this is a subbing/translation type post and not a plot post. ^^; For a moment I thought the subs were just random letters...a foreign language of some sort. Then I realized that they were sentences, only backwards. The subs that I'm watching are done by Dattebayo...so I wonder if they really are translation of the Japanese backwards...but how could they tell? Even if you tried to say the words in English backwards, you can't really tell. I'll be discussing this with Pearl-chan later on...since its the sort of thing we talk about. ^^;
And Burupya jumping up all worried is still the cutest thing ever. ^.^
I went to the Nakano ward office today to get my 3rd (and last) ID card. I headed home without stopping by Mandarake since I want to finish packing. Leaving for Nagoya tonight by overnight bus. For now, I have ironed my pants for my Ritsuka cosplay this saturday. I might meet others from the cosplay site...but no info on that just yet. Tomorrow will be me touring a few of Nagoya's tourist spots. Hopefully, I won't get too lost. That is reserved for Kyoto. ^^;
7/29/09 ~ Wednesday 9:10 pm - Tokyo ~ 8:10 am - NY
Status: sleepy ~ Listening to: Watashi ni Dekiru Koto - Ishida Youko (Strike Witches OP) Listen or Save
My return to Japan was a blur as I was in and out of sleep most of the time. That's what happens when I don't sleep for 2 days.... *falls down* I must mention though, my experience with Air Canada was a good one (besides the incident during the connection at Toronto.) Their seats seems larger then average economy class and the movie selections are wide. It was quite comfortable.
My movie selections upon my return was 'Coraline' which was a good movie, 'Street Fighter' which was interesting and 'Hannah Montana the Movie' which was humorous. No indepth review this time since I'm beyond tired. ^^;
My two suitcases were difficult to move around in Shinjuku, but I managed. Upon my return, my French roommate greeted me and I unpacked and showered.
For certain reasons, my French roommate will be leaving for France on Aug. 11...earlier then her original plan of staying until November. My Japanese roommate will be leaving at the end of Aug. which means I'll be by myself for awhile and most likely others will move in at some point in time. I'm sad that they're leaving but it can't be helped. My french roomie mentioned that she'll be around to visit.
7/28/09 ~ Tuesday 11:36 am - NY
Status: hungry ~ Listening to: Snow Kiss - Nirgilis (D.Gray Man ED) Listen or Save
first leg of the trip
lol Did I mention that my next post will be from Japan? It's from Canada instead. ^^; My car service to the airport proved faulty when it stopped on the highway. However, another car came soon enough and I was sent on my way. Checking in and the trip to Toronto was a blur in my mind since I was asleep most of the time. The airport here has free wifi so here I am, utilizing it. ^.^
Roy...back in action
As hinted in the previous episode of Fullmetal Alchemist, Roy has stepped back into the limelight. With the recent arrest of Maria Ross, we step into one of the first conspiracies in the story. One that is brillantly executed by Colonel Mustang himself. How he is connected with Barry the Chopper is still unknown, but Ling and crew is now wrapped up in the mess. My fav moment of this story has got to be during Alexander's polite but strained comments towards Roy concerning what he did. All Roy could say to him is 'Take a vacation. In the East.' (paraphrasing) That look and the resulting humor of 'Ed, your automail is broken. We're taking a trip.' Kyaaa...I love that part! I don't remember if it's manga-based (since I need to re-read this part) but Maria's decision in the prison cell was also wraught with humor which is a nice change to darkness of this episode. Throughout it all, Ed's anger is turned onto Roy. Those angry eyes, that glare.... Trust him, Edo-kun!
The next couple of stories will have Roy-centered action. His decision marks the changes in the story. What happens next? As Roy saids in the episode, he is going fishing! ^.^
6:24 am - NY ~ Status: sleepy
I'm heading to the airport now. My next update will be in Japan. Ja matta ne!
2:30 am - NY ~ Status: busy
a late lunch
I woke late to find that my 11am lunch appt. with my mother's friends (her REAL friends this time...not another ambush) were delayed. They are an elderly aunt and uncle that I grew fond of. (They had a house by the ocean in LI where I had an awesome cosplay photoshoot a few years ago.) We headed to a Korean restaurant that just happened to be the same location as my fav restaurant where I usually take amity and co.. The place changed since the owners change but I never got to see how the food was since it didn't open until 5pm. We switched over to another Korean restaurant that was run by Taiwanese people. The dishes were good and large. We ended taking half of it home. ^^; (Or at least I took half of it Pearl-chan's.)
After lunch, I made a quick stop at a nearby Rite Aid to pick up a few last things for Japan and swung by Alby-kun's to pick up my umbrella that I left there last week. I greeted Alby-kun's father and Alby and left for Pearl-chan's who was patiently waiting for me. Osoi sumimasen.... *bows* (Don't think I got that right...but I digress. <.<;)
SSBB returns as do the anime
Shortly before I left for Japan last year, Pearl-chan and I started playing SSBB in story mode...and got a good way through. Today, we continued our playing. But not before we did alot of talking. She gave me Junjou Romantica manga 8-10, Ai no Kusabi novel 5, Loveless special cards and a beautiful Junjou Romantica bag that I've been pining for for some time. P-chan called and we all spoke together with her on speaker. *happy sigh* Of course, yesterday's debacle of a dinner was a major topic of discussion. ^^; Dinner was a quick one for us and I ate some of the leftovers of lunch inbetween playing several stages of the games. We needed to rest sometimes since Pearl-chan (being the first player) had alot of jumping/flying to do so that we may advance. ^.^ Flying is not easy!
We also took an break and watched the raws of 07 Ghost ep. 17 together. I won't say much about the episode besides the fact that we find out a bit more about Frau as a child and he was adorable which is no surprise. ^.^ Pearl-chan also show me a couple of clips of Hanasakeru Seishounen. Mostly about the history of grandparents of the main characters...which was sweet and sad at the same time. We also had a long discussion of what exactly is the name of one of the characters...'Catherine' or 'Kathleen' since two different subbers named her as such. We even pulled out the manga raws...but was unable to come to a conclusion. I feel that 'Kathleen' is closer, but 'Catherine' seems to be more right when Mahati calls her that....
The ending boss with the super long HP bar was so difficult to beat...that we didn't beat him yet. The blue dude had several different attacks, one of which had next to zero chance of survival since we were thrown off the screen immediately. (I say 'next to zero' since Pearl-chan survived one time. ^.^) There were 2 or 3 times that we got the HP bar down pretty low...but my ride came so we couldn't try again. Our game is postponed once more...until my return. ^.^ With manga and things in tow (Pokemon game 'Blue Rescue Team' for the DS as well since she let me borrow it, ^.^) I waved goodbye...for now.
massive food post: international style
I had alot of delicious food this week and I was able to take several pics for me to bring back and show off to Japanese friends. ^.^ So here is a mixture of food from Japan and NY. Itadakimasu!
7/26/09 ~ Sunday 8:47 pm - NY
Status: angry ~ Listening to: rain falling outside
I'm so tired that I don't know if I will cry or scream at something. I'm immature and selfish which is very inappropriate at my age...but I'm allowed to be that way most of the time. Tonight, I decided to be mature about the situation. My mother greeted me after I came home from church so that we can go to a dinner thing with her friends "who likes Japan so they want to meet me". Those attending the dinner sounded like a couple with their children so I acquiesced. That is the lamest excuse for a dinner gathering as I can understand it...and it turned into the mother of the couple...and not the couple at all but her other son. I didn't suspect anything at all when my mother critqued my outfit, nor did I suspect it when I noted two dresses on my door. I didn't change and I went into the car.
The dude in the front seat greeted me. In perfect English. *lightbulb goes up* Hey, they're trying to match me up with this guy because there is no way in hell that he is a friend of my mother's. I smiled cordially and chattered throughout dinner (which was Korean btw) and acted amiably as I always do. When he mentioned that he was a dentist, I knew he was the rumored guy that my mother's friend wanted me to check out. My mother never subjected me to this kind of ambush before so I will forgive her of this single intrusion, but never again. I abhor wasting time and abhor the idea of people matching up over these occasions. I never thought it would happen to me (foolish person that I am) and now that it has, I'm happy to return to Japan where I can escape such ideations.
Since I know you guys will ask, the guy was nice enough, strong medical professional family, well off financially, athletic and is pleasant to talk to. I suppose his only faults is the fact that he isn't impressionable, he is okay looking and that he has no interest or remark about Japanime in general. I didn't ask and he didn't tell. My mention of cosplay was accepted with a nod and no question. I don't think I made an impression of any sort on him and he certainly has no impression on me. As a friend (since my mother insisted that this meeting be one of friendship,) I don't think we would even be friends if we met outside of this setting. Upon that kind of assumption, this occasion is a fail. I don't think I need to explain myself any further on my own blog so we'll call this case closed.
7/25/09 ~ Saturday 10:28 pm - NY
Status: happy ~ Listening to: SUICIDES LOVE STORY - Kitade Nana (Persona -trinity soul- ED) Listen or Save
My wonderful friend, WL gave me 20lbs worth of books (I'm estimating the weight, but it certainly wasn't 5lbs as she first surmised ^.^) yesterday which I brought home, sorted out my fav and sold today at Bookoff. The exercise training was from carrying it home yesterday and bringing it to Bookoff this afternoon. P-chan already warned me about the undependable 7 trains on weekends so I kinda anticipated the transfers and walking. But with that many books...it was quite a workout. ^^;
I met 801megane and crew at Bookoff (gomen for being late ^^;) and while I sold the books, 801megane gave me the books she was receiving on my behalf for my reviews. I got Steal Moon vol. 2, Blue Sheep Reverie and Hero Heel vol. 3 by Tateno Makoto-sensei, White Brand by Youka Nitta-sensei, Time Lag drawn by Odagiri Hotaru-sensei and Train Train vol. 2 with Millennium Prince Minister vol. 1 by Eiki Eiki-sensei. Iceblueaya sold Legal Drug vol. 1-3 to me. After looking about Bookoff, we went to Cafe Zaiya nearby so I could treat animemiz to her b-day treat. Otanjoubi omedatou, animemiz! ^.^ I ate green tea shaved ice and felt that although the Japanese shaved ice desserts with syrup aren't as good as the Chinese versions, the green tea one isn't bad at all. The group split up to go to kaiten sushi while I headed to Flushing to run errands.
But not before I stepped into Payless and got a pair of black sneakers. Yay for new shoes! Suffice to say, although I rid myself of my load of books, my bag wasn't light upon my return to queens. ^.^
At Flushing, I got my watch fixed since it was out of batteries and headed to one of the Korean stores to look for something for kumi-kun or fighter. I ended up getting a NY keychain. I also went to get my eyebrow waxed. Okaasan had notified the store of my coming so they were expecting me. ^^; After heading to Bayside by bus, I stopped at the Dunkin Donuts nearby. I ordered a chocolate donut and a french creuller...and the worker behind the counter noted that I stared at the donuts the entire time I gave my order. (I think this 'not looking at the person when speaking' thing is a habit from Japan.... ^^;) I explained that I had been away for a looong time and haven't seen a donut until now...which is totally true. lol He gave me 2 of each and charged me my original order. Awwww...that was so nice of him. Donuts in hand, I headed home.
Diana-chan, this remind me of our church friend and his seemingly endless supply of donuts every sunday. I truly appreciate that. Because of him, the chocolate donuts have always been my fav. ^.^
moving to Asia
This afternoon, iceblueaya announced that she will be moving to HK with her family next month. This extremely short notice was a surprise to all of us (expect for 801megane who found out yesterday.) Although she'll be closer to Japan now (which she plans to visit the first chance she gets,) we'll all definitely miss her here in NY. I cannot be here to send her off properly, but I'm sure animemiz and 801megane will. *hugs*
5:15 am - NY ~ Status: sleepy ~ Listening to: silence
changes...are the same
The newest episode of Pandora Hearts pulls off another seamless story with the almost schizophrenic tone of humor and seriousness. It's a quality that is unique to this series and does not always work elsewhere. As many have pointed out and noticed, I do tend to like the angsty plotlines with a slight masochistic nature. Pandora Hearts have all the elements of making me cry, pushing the emotions to the limit and breaking hearts...but it doesn't. After every heartwrenching, tear gushing scene is a humorous one. I understand that the manga falls along those lines and the anime seem to go with that very well. But I'm digressing from the heart of this episode....
The opening of this story completes what the previous episode left answered: what happened to Lady Sharon? We find out a bit of Break's background along with where is his other eye...and I'm happy that my theory of Vincent stealing it (since he has two different colored eyes) is untrue. The relationship between Sharon and Break is a little more clear and the story pulls away from them to throw us into another loopy sideplot that has a hidden meaning to lead us into the next part of our story. I have only a few more things to note: big boobs and Gil's phobia. Both are prominent in the second half the episode and the perhaps the secret of Gil's important hat...? Lastly, the soundtrack is beautiful. If anything, I want the piano pieces to the locket melody which is also the opening melody! *waits impatiently for the OST*
7/24/09 ~ Friday 11:37 pm - NY
Status: tired ~ Listening to: Sakura Emi Kimi Omou - Chihara Minori (D.C.II S.S. - Da Capo II OST) Listen or Save
loving the bookstores
Diana-chan and I met each other at Old Navy before we headed to Sunway for brunch of fish and corn soup/sauce with fried dough in noodle. Oishi! There, I surprised her with the Nyanko-sensei cellphone charm and the giant dorayaki that she was drooling over from my pics back in Dec. '08. ^.^ We headed into Manhattan and stopped at Kinokuniya and Bookoff since we never explored there together. At Kino, she bought two things, one being a Cactus FF cellphone charm. (My godsister has the Chocobo charm...and I want one too. ^.^ When I get back to Japan....) Throughout the day, our convos ranged from BL to my work and her school. Alas, our time together was spent quickly and soon, I needed to meet my co-workers. I took her to Elizabeth Center since it was a need-to-know location for any Chinese Japanime fan in NY. ^.^ I meet up with JK there and we headed to our secret
base office. ^.^
fish and tofu
I met some of my co-workers at the front before we headed upstairs. As WL mentioned, the front was newly decorated with the agency emblem on the wall. I presented everyone with their gifts and snacks. I thought I rid myself of these bags...until WL gave me two large bags of manga and cds. o.O She said it was alot...but it was ALOT. lol Arigato! I drooled over the books and FY cds (Fushigi Yuugi FTW!) and looked over my old office. Although the front office changed, nothing much has been changed. I greeted some new people and gave my friends the 411 on life in Japan. Unfortunately (or fortunately ^^;) some of my Japanese co-workers were not there to 'test' my Japanese. KS was there and I was happy to learn that she'll be in Tokyo in September. Yay!
Some of us left and we headed to a restaurant that was actually just outside of EC. ^.^ Since one of us had some teeth issues (braces prep so teeth hurt alot *is sympathetic*) our dinner was mostly fish and tofu which was delicious since I loved the fish they chose. Afterwards, they accompanied me to the Chinatown Ice cream factory so I could get my ice cream treat. Then AC and DD accompanied me to a nearby giftshop so I could get NY souvenirs. lol I think it was the first time I bought any NY related things. ^^; I got my Japanese roommate, my Japanese teaching assistant and fighter a NY cup each which I will proceed to fill with candy. I got my 5 students (who are doing the speech contest in August) a Statue of Liberty keychain each and a NY magnet for Fighter since she requested for one. ^.^
bags...and more bags
I must thank my co-workers and Diana-chan for helping me carry so many bags today. I went with Japanese omiyage and returned with tons of books. ^.^ Arigato gozaimasu minna!
7/23/09 ~ Thursday 11:59 pm - NY
Status: busy ~ Listening to: Sawatte Violet - Tomatsu Haruka (Zettai Karen Children OST) Listen or Save
digging into storage
This morning, I went to the storage basement where all my stuff and some of okaasan's stuff (furniture and the like) were placed in my move back to Queens. I retrieved my Tomoyo-hime cosplay along with the gold metal sheets (so I can fix my headpiece) which will be brought back to Japan. I also got a few fictional books that I will keep in my room in NY and some will return with me. We also stopped at Target where I bought some candies to bring as omiyage for the teachers. Yay for funsized treats. ^.^
At home, I sorted out my things and watched Harry Potter 5 on my comp before heading out to Flushing to meet people
I met up with aznhypergirl (whom I gave the Starbucks cellphone charms to) at Old Navy before we headed to a Korean restaurant for some spicy tofu soup. She gave me the 411 on some TACQ related people and we discussed finding jobs and things. Ah...the declining market.... <.< I left around 7pm since KC arrived from Chinatown and I met him at Old Navy (of course! Everyone meets at Old Navy. ^.^) He won't be around tomorrow for the office reunion which is why he came out today. *hugs* We headed to Flushing Mall to grab dinner for him and dessert for me. We stopped by the lamb-kabob vendor since that is his fav in Flushing before heading to the mall. Instead of dessert, I ended up ordering smelly tofu. ^.^ I heard about his job and we traded stories about the kids we work with. Such fun.... We ended the evening and caught the bus for home.
Tomorrow's agenda include meeting Diana-chan and my other co-workers. Yay! ^.^
Nissin and gundam
Let me clarify a common misconception. I have not been living off of instant ramen while living in Japan. I actually cook (albiet not really well) rice, vegetables, meat and fish. *gasp from the crowd* lol I don't buy much instant ramen but I definitely want this. Simply put, mini Gundam figures will be sold with Nissin instant noodles. I have no idea what it has to do with weight loss, but mini figures are so cute! ^.^
12:30 am - NY ~ Status: sleepy ~ Listening to: me complaining
back to bookstore hopping
After sending my mother off with Pearl-chan's things, I took the bus to Flushing where I bought some shredded meat bread. I also saw curry bread which is the first time I see any in NY. (Will try some tomorrow. ^.^) I headed into the city to meet up with iceblueaya at Kino. We caught up on some things including discussing the latest songs I heard (which aren't alot) in Japan. Animemiz met us later at BookOff where more browsing ensued. We met up with animemiz's sister at Grand Central where we took the train to 14th St. to hit Forbidden Planet and Strandbooks. At Strand, I finally found and bought vol. 13 of Moon Child...so I only have vol. 12 missing. ^^; We ended our book tour with Red Mango with the delicious treat provided by animemiz. Arigato, animemiz! ^-^
pizza and fighting
I bid animemiz and crew farewell (or more like see you saturday) before heading to Queens to Alby-kun's. When I arrived, P-chan was picking out pizza (our dinner, yay!) and I discovered the wonderful world of ordering pizza online. NY has efficiency too! +1 lol After picking up the pizza, we proceeded to eat while watching CSI, followed by UFC matches on Spike TV. It was the BL fan in me...but after watching 2.5 hours of this, I finally thought "Hmmm...those look alot like sexual positions. I mean really! The guy is between the other's legs!" Of course, there is not much love involved with all the punching going on. ^^; I have a one track mind.... *runs away*
Due to my lack of sleep the night before, I was napping while some of the matches were going on. ^.^ Alby-kun took us home afterwards. Tomorrow promises to be another fulfilling day!
7/22/09 ~ Wednesday 4:05 am - NY
Status: sleepy ~ Listening to: me typing
And I was correct. The convo between Frau and Teito in ep. 16 of 07 Ghost is wrought with BL-ness. First off, we have Razette show another usefulness of hers besides being able to play the piano with webbed feet. My only question is, why didn't she do that from the beginning? lol Most of all, I discovered another usage for the zaiphon besides fighting, breaking walls and leaving messages (Mikage's last words. *cries*) They're also used for basic conversation. I think Frau and Teito's conversation has never been so deep and heartfelt as it is now. They should do zaiphon-speak more often. ^.^ Below are some spoiler-ish quotes...which I loved too much to leave alone....
Teito: I want to be source of help for you!
Frau: What a pained face you make towards me...
Frau: The Barsburg Scripture Volume III, Verse 17... Let me dedicate that to you. Good luck with the exam!
Frau: Can I make one request?
Frau: If you really want to make me feel at ease...
Teito: As if I would, you moron!
My last thoughts are of the last quotes...why would Teito blush? Why hold his ear like that? Was Frau's voice too sweet to hear? Of course, the answer to those question are only reflected in his love for Frau. ^.^ My favorite quote of the entire episode?
As long as you keep anything about me within you... "Always... My heart will be with you!"
Who saids that to whom? Watch and find out! *fangirls*
7/21/09 ~ Tuesday 10:50 pm - NY
Status: angry ~ Listening to: me typing
I met with Alby-kun this morning and we went to East buffet for dim sum and caught up on each other's lives over yummy dishes. Afterwards, we headed to payless since I needed shoes. I bought two pairs of working shoes before we drove to Queens Center to hit their Best Buy. After going O.o over their prices of various electronics, we defacted to Target where I bought a printer cable, webcam and comp headset. (Yes, I returned to NY to buy electronic-type things...but some for okaasan! ^^;) Afterwards, we headed to Daffy's and DSW to look for boots...mainly rainboots. I saw a some and tried out some but decided against buying any. Whilst this was going on, a customer inquired about shoes from both me and Alby. Do we look like sales rep? lol
I got in touch with some people on the drive to Alby-kun's house where I was happily surprised by P-chan and Alby-kun's mother's greetings. I was persuaded to stay, but since I had plans with Jenn-chan, we postponed our celebration (at my return of course ^.^) until tomorrow night. Alby-kun drove me to give my TACQ old friend her omiyage of Starbucks cellphone straps. We promised to meet at another time while I headed to my fav Taiwanese restaurant 66 to meet Jenn-chan. We chatted over pockchops and rice and later cream biscuits and pudding bubble tea at the new Quicklys. An enjoyable evening....
I needed to exchange my suitcases since one of the wheels was broken off. My mother did it for me today but we ended up with something not as practical...which is resulting in me being able to take only one suitcase back to Japan. >.< I can deal with one suitcase...but there are some things I'm pissed off about with this as the core of my problems. Minor issue I know but not too happy about the results. Hoping to deal with it somehow.
12:31 pm - NY ~ Status: happy
an adult's tears
While I am waiting for Alby-kun to finish with his errands, I watched FMA's newest episode. The pacing of the story has certainly slowed down since there is only a minor plot with little action...something I feel is appropriate at this point. The Elric brothers and Winry discover the news of Hughes...and the deliverer of the news (to the brothers anyway) is Maria Ross. I don't remember if she was the one in the manga, but the next part of the story largely concerns her. Poor her...her presence and part in the conspiracy isn't that large but she gets blamed for so much. ^^;
Personally, I'm happy to reach this part of the story since this is where I started to lose essential details in the manga. (Currently, the details in the manga have gotten sooo complicated that I've started to not understand whole chunks even though I grasp the action. >.<) The subdued feel of the episode is nice. In retrospect, I think this is the one episode with the absence of humor...although the beginning with Roy asleep in the room had an element of humor in it. ^.^ But Roy is no longer lazy. In the manga, his laziness is only an appearance of undermining is tenacity, skill and goals. To take over the world! Mwahahahahaha....
7/20/09 ~ Monday 11:55 pm - NY
Status: tired ~ Listening to: Sakura Amaneku Sekai - yozuca* (D.C.II S.S. - Da Capo II OP) Listen or Save
a busy day for me
My friend VC came to pick me up at 11am and we went to lunch at a Korean restaurant. Afterwards, we headed to Target to buy some things to take home to Japan. We picked up some ice cream at Carvel before heading to my house, but not before we headed to her house to pick up her external HD. At my place, I moved some BL anime as well as Kuroshitsuji to her HD since I told her about it. ^-^ (I had given her her souvenirs of vol. 1 of Dear+ illustration booklet as well as the Kuroshitsuji playing cards.) Our convo alluded to many things including me teaching in Japan, her having taught in Korea and BL and anime. Afterwards, she took me to Flushing.
I went around to my usual shopping spots including Flushing Mall and discovered some new stores and a new branch of Quickly (bubble tea) at Roosevelt Ave.) I bought some wall sticker decos for my french roomie (since I know she will like them) as her omiyage. Unfortunately, some stores also disappeared/closed down. I met up with my godsisters around 7pm and we headed to our usual restaurant at Prince St. We talked alot and caught up on the latest VG news with Theresa-neechan greeting me a ton of new dvd movies from her games. Yay, new stuff to watch when I return to Japan! ^.^ I gave Theresa-neechan the YYH doujinshi by Kouga Yun-sensei and gave Christine-neechan the Hello Kitty cellphone strap.
At around 9pm, I met up with 140 and larkspur for some dessert at Pinkberry. We talk alot at the little area next to McD's before heading home. I gave 140 her Pooh-decorated fan and hankerchef and larkspur her Doraemon fork and spoon. The two guys that I saw were a surprise so no gifts for them this time. ^^; It was an enjoyable day, albiet super tiring but definitely tons of fun and food-filling. lol Tomorrow, I will be seeing Alby-kun and Jeen-chan...not at once though. ^.^ Yay!
12:23 am - NY ~ Status: amused
After church today (where I played piano after x months ^^;) we went to see the new Harry Potter movie. Simply put, the movie was watered down from the book...which is not surprising since the book was the longest of the series. For that reason, alot of the stuff was cut out and shortened...but it was actually very good. I didn't feel it to be as densely packed from movie 4. No exact details since no spoilers, but the subplots of the movie was welldone in weaving together and although there were some plotholes that people that didn't read the book *points at self* would find lacking, it was still very welldone.
Due to the nature of the film and plot, I was surprised to find the ending not as sad as I expected it to be. 'Goblet of Fire' was even more emotionally drawn out then this one even though the ending for this one is suppose to have a bigger impact. I think it's because we missed a scene from the books and this wasn't as drawn out as it would to give a more depressing feel to it. Awesome movie in general. Next one is the last one!
today and tomorrow
After the movie, we went to Cold Stone's for an ice cream (since I was talking about it all day. ^_^) After that, I took a nap on the way home since I was sooo sleepy (jetlagging a bit afterall ^.^) and tomorrow, I'll be meeting VC, one of my ex-co-workers at 11am for lunch and the evening will be filled with my godsisters. Yay for plans! Tuesday is tentatively going to be with Alby-kun and the evening, I'll be with Jenn-chan. Don't know when I'll see Diana-chan, Pearl-chan and P-chan yet.... Doko desu ka, minna-san?
7/19/09 ~ Sunday 2:24 am - NY
Status: happy ~ Listening to: Sayonara no Omajinai - Going Underground (Allison to Lilia ED) Listen or Save
back in NY!
I arrived at around 9pm which is later than initially planned. ^^; My church friend came to pick me up, greeting me with my first cup of milk tea with tapioca. Yay! At home, I gave him his omiyage of 3 bottles of greentea flavored Coca Cola. He will be picking me up for church tomorrow at 12pm. But I digress....
movies in the sky
My french roomie helped me carry my super heavy luggage to the Shinjuku JR gate for the Narita Express. I checked in my luggage with no problem and went in. I bought a bit more omiyage for friends (since I saw something new) as well as mochi set that I always love from the airport. As a late lunch, I bought a sausage on a stick with an interesting mustard/ketchup packet...the kind you can open just by squeezing. Took me a moment to figure it out and then I had to take a pic of it since I'm amusing like that. ^.^
On the airplane, I discovered that the Air Canada seats had A/C sockets and usb ports (what for?) built into the 'entertainment' screen. Sugoi! First time I saw that on the plane...especially for economy seating. I was going to use my comp to type stuff up, but I ended up watching several movies. The first was 'Watchmen' which had a really interesting opening sequence and storyline...though I kept on thinking in my head 'Why the censorship for Dr. Manhattan? Take off the blue underwear!' lol ^^; Pervy is me.... The 2nd movie was 'Monsters vs. Aliens' which was funny and light hearted. The 3rd movie was 'Race to Witch Mountain' which I will give more of an indept (albiet short) review on.
Spoilery: Witch Mountain movie...it's not
I read the books and watched the first two movies based on the books. They were both well done...albiet watered down a bit, but still well done. This third movie was not bad...it just didn't follow up as well in terms of connecting with the previous stories. It was a 'Witch Mountain' movie in name only. Sort of as tributes to the original, there were the elements from the original movie. We had a little girl and boy with special powers. Same as their predecessors, the girl could read minds, talk to animals and lift objects with her mind. The boy could change matter to move through objects or make himself like an impenetrable wall. There is an old man character that helps the kids at some point, but mostly the action surrounds Vin Diesel in his latest 'save the kids' film. (He seems to starr in alot of kids films. ^^;) Other tributes or hints alluding to the other movies was that one of the scenes was at Stony Creek (where the kids went in the first movie,) and they had a scene where they rode around in a trailer. Besides that though, there was nothing to do with Witch Mountain itself and that phrase doesn't even appear until the very end when Diesel's writes a book 'Race to Witch Mountain'...which didn't make much sense since they didn't really stay in that area for very long.
Spoilers aside, it wasn't a terrible movie on it's on...just not a good sequel and not very close in storyline to the original in anyway besides the hints.
back to regular programming...
The last movie I watched was 'Push' which is another psychic-based storyline. I enjoyed that one the best since the plot was interesting and the powers were awesome...and sometimes funny. Sniffers? They're soooo gay...sniffing at people's things to get their 'image'. The main character even made a quip about giving toilet paper to the sniffers at the beginning. Ewww.... lol BTW, the story takes place in HK and the main character spoke a bit of it (quite well, I believe) at the beginning. ^.^
After the movie marathon, I slept before we landed in Toronto. I needed to change from Air Canada to AA and for whatever reason, I needed to go claim my baggage, go through Canadian customs, US customs and 'check in' again. Interesting...never did that before. ^^: Many things occured which first started with my luggage coming in waaaay late. One of the workers even went to get my luggage for me (because one arrived and the large one-omiyage-didn't) which I'm truly grateful for. And then I went through US customs and was told I needed to go through another terminal (in another building) for AA. By that time, I was already too late since I would need to take a train to get to the other terminal. One of the police officers personally escorted me to the train. o.O The officials we passed joked that I was being 'arrested' and everyone was so nice remarking about my special escort. ^.^ Definitely, they were all very sweet. I got through to AA, changed my flight (since I missed it) and ended up taking a later one. I grabbed a bite to eat before boarding my plane...which turned out to be an American Eagle plane...another division of AA for short flights. It was so small!
We needed to step outside in order to board the plane and there were only a few people on the flight itself. A simple, old-fashioned type of plane though with a unique quality all it's own. At LGA, I couldn't find my luggage again, but one of the workers had both on a cart and went with me to the door so he can get his tip. My friend met me halfway. ^.^ Some amusing mishaps and overall an enjoyable trip.
7/18/09 ~ Saturday 12:00 pm - Tokyo ~ 11:00 pm - NY
Status: busy ~ Listening to: me typing quickly
last update before I leave
Going to leave in half an hour to catch the Narita Express. Will give another update when I arrive x hours later in NY. ^.^ But before I step away from the computer...one more piece of news about giant gundam...
getting married? love Gundam?
Well, you can get married next to the big one. Obviously this only until this thing gets torn down (Me: noooooo! >.<) But it sounds awesome in it's own way. I guess you can reserve the area around it and perform ceremonies there. Sugoi! ^.^
Japan is really milking this giant gundam...but I'm not surprised and it's just what they do. They really know how to push their merchandise! (Even if it is huge and inmovable. ^.^)
12:10 am - Tokyo ~ 11:10 am 7/17 - NY ~ Status: amused ~ Listening to: Pandora Hearts on the computer
my one and only friend
If there was any episode that had a perfect combination of humorous and serious scenes, then Pandora Hearts ep. 16 is it. From the beginning, we have the seriousness of Alice and Oz appearing in Pandora HQ...a dangerous occurance due to him being an illegal chain. But a surprise occured and now Oz is on better ground than before. One thing to note, when Jack pushed Oz aside, I totally fangirled over that moment. <3 ^.^ Other drool-worthy moments include Gilbert lying upon the sofa and the preview which alludes to something straight out of a shoujo manga. They really pile on the fanservice!
Besides the humor juxtaposed with the serious scenes, the plot is fresh and interesting. New developments occur that push the story along and Break is eating more cake then ever. (Pearl-chan pointed out that me and Alby-kun are the same...bottomless tummys and me with endless sweets.... ^.^) Gilbert's devotion to Oz never wavers...even as 'Jack' falls into his arms. The truth is out and now we come to the next stage.
7/17/09 ~ Friday 10:15 pm - Tokyo ~ 9:15 am - NY
Status: hungry ~ Listening to: me typing
saying goodbye to Ikebekuro...for now
I headed to Ikebekuro after my monthly ALT meeting today. I went to all the K-books as well as Mandarake. They finally have new point cards at K-books. (The BL ones were sold out for so long so I waited for new ones. ^.^) At K-books 2, I bought the points card that has the illustration by Monchi Kaori-sensei with the characters that look like Daini Button Kudasai...but I'm not sure. ^.^ Yay! I have the card! With card in hand, I bought a Gundam 00 poster along with a Junjou Romantica mini-poster that was really one of the Ciel calendar extras. At K-books, I sold some of the extras that I accumalated from my purchases. ^^; 10 yen for each acceptable item. Not alot, but at least I didn't have to throw it out. ^.^ After K-books, fighter and I headed to Animate to drool over the new stuff. I've acquired a taste for Nyanko-sensei goods which seem to be in abundance. I also fell for the EVA Shinji&Kaworu phone strap...but resisted the urge. I have willpower too! ^^;
On the train, fighter and I bid each other farewell (for the time being) with promises of much more adventures to come upon my return to Tokyo. ^.^ Got most of the packing done last night but just need a few more things. Leaving the apartment 12:30pm to catch the Narita Express. Busy tonight!
1:02 am - Tokyo ~ 12:02 pm 7/16 - NY ~ Status: sleepy
more Inuyasha anime to come
The ending of the anime occurred when the manga was still going indefinitely. Now that we have a definite end, the anime is revived to continue and complete the story. From where the anime left off (vol. 35 apparently,) the new series will continue until it's final chapter in vol. 56. As I was remarking to Pearl-chan, I feel that the anime based on Takahashi Rumiko-sensei always had a steady feel to it. It runs pretty closely with the manga but just has alot of fillers. In actuality, the manga itself is filler-riffic so there is not much lost in there. The animation has always been steady and the storyline (that isn't a filler) has always been great. The previous seiyuus will return to reprise their roles and so we'll finally have our conclusion.
Makes me wonder when they'll do the same for D. Gray Man once the manga is finished since the anime wasn't complete. It's not as filler-riffic but when the anime is trying to stall for the manga, the storylines definitely tends to go in weird directions. ^.^
7/16/09 ~ Thursday 7:02 pm - Tokyo ~ 6:02 am - NY
Status: busy ~ Listening to: Devils Never Cry - David Baker and Shawn McPherson (Devil May Cry 3 ED) Listen or Save
I'm actually home quite early since my Ikebekuro visit has been moved to tomorrow so that fighter can join me. (She curses me for asking her if she wants to come along since the answer is most likely yes...and we're both saving money for Kyoto. ^.^) So I basically finished my shopping today of omiyage. I went to all my fav snack shops to finish buying some things for friends including WL who especially asked for 'japan-only' snacks. I also picked up two Tokyo banana cakes. I packed the larger of my suitcases last night and the other will be finished tonight. FYI, the larger of my suitcases is the one with the omiyage. The first pic below is the mass of bags. I'm quite organized. Each group of people (or individual person) have their package all set up. I used the black K-books bags and the blue Animate bags that I have in abundance. ^.^ You might get a glimpse of what your gifts would look like...not that you will see much. Maybe your package is on the lower level. ^-^
And on top is the big Nyanko-sensei who will guard it all. ^.^
We're at the end of the first semester. Some thoughts I have concerning my students are not about their academic achievement in the English language...but more of their behavior towards each other. Teaching thus far, I come to an understanding of why the BL genre have so much student-centered romances...because you see it practically every day! <.<; Guys hanging over guys, girls hugging girls...there is no end to the touchiness of the youth. There is barely any touching of the opposite gender though. Getting them to shake hands was kinda like EVA's hedgehog dilemma, everyone backs away from the other. But guys and guys most of all.... ^^;
We have guys hugging guys from behind. I see this even with third year students. One guy will be sitting on a chair and another would come up to him and hug him from behind. Arm over shoulder, on waist as they walk together down the hall. (Aren't they hot?!?) Arm around the front of the chest...you know, the guy in the front has his back to the guy's chest. o.o Not a bad thing at all, but...I'm trying to look away, close my eyes and think: "I'm a wholesome teacher. I'm a good teacher. No BL thoughts in school!" It's next to maddening seeing this on a regular basis. I obviously would have this smile on my face...but trying to school it out (pun intended) is definitely really hard. Especially when the students are so close to each other...physically. lol
One class even had a student carry another guy bridal style. o.O Two guys were doing this before class starts. Nevermind why he was doing it (because I had no idea why,) but telling them to stop, that it's dangerous with a straight face was very hard. Perhaps it's because they're still in junior high that they're still all touchy...but it certainly is amusing to watch. As mentioned before, girls have their own share of hugs and closeness, but the guys.... *have no words*
Another incident was actually yesterday in one of my last classes of the semester. During the class, one guy was playing with another's hair. Telling third years to stop and concentrate on work is like pulling teeth so it continued throughout the class. When I said he was playing with his hair, I meant he was running his fingers through it, twisting it and so on. At the end of the class while I was gathering my things, I noted that another teacher was speaking with a group of guys. Turns out 2 or more guys have taken the hair dude and they went behind the curtain...where the touching escalated to beyond what the student felt comfortable with. O.O What happened, how and why was not explained and me even asking about the incident with my Japanese assistant was hard with all the images popping into my head. *cleans out brain with soap* Professionalism kicked in and I managed to ask in the only terms I knew how. Me: "Two against one, behind the curtains...was it
buttsex bullying?" Assistant: "They said they were playing and he just didnít feel comfortable with all that touching." Me: *silence*
So much unspoken in those silences.... ^^;
7/15/09 ~ Wednesday 8:54 pm - Tokyo ~ 7:54 am - NY
Status: tired ~ Listening to: Sekirei - Hayami Saori, Inoue Marina, Hanazawa Kana and Endou Aya (Sekirei OP) Listen or Save
I have no floor...
As planned, I'm done with the majority of my buying for omiyage today. I picked up a few more things for the office friends and moved on to perishable items...aka. food. I got green tea Coca Cola for one of my church friends and a bunch of ramen for DD and AC at the office. I also picked up some sake in a pop cap jar...which is an 'only-in-Japan' item. ^.^ Tomorrow and friday, I will be picking up a couple more food items. Tomorrow will also be my last trip to Ikebekuro before I head back to NY. ^.^
In between it all, I picked up my salary today and now have funding to go to my planned trips in August. ^.^
to sit on a Gundam's shoulder...
...cost over 800,000 yen at this moment. ^^; Part of Japan's bid for the 2016 Olympics, they placed a once-in-a-lifetime chance to sit on the shoulder of Odaiba's Gundam (and get your picture taken) on Yahoo Japan auctions. o.O Out of all the awesome things I saw on that auction site...this has got to be one of the most expensive. ^^; The winning bidder also gets to participate in the opening ceremonies. What will that person do? Carry the Olympic torch? Maybe not.... We have no idea but it sounds awesome just the same and people are bidding for it. I have only one thing to say...Seig Zeon!
most awesome fan video is back
Last year, I posted about Monty Oum's CG vid of 'Dead Fantasy' which pits the girls of Final Fantasy with those of Dead or Alive. We have been waiting for the third installment of this series for over a year...and it's finally out. Tifa vs. Hitomi is a fight you don't want to miss. ^.^
Seems that 'Father' has the 'key' to Teito's past. ^^; In ep. 15, Teito is back to brooding over who to trust. Frau isn't helpful with his vague answers...but saying 'Decide for yourself' is actually a very sensible suggestion. The undercover baddies make their appearance and the androgynous one challenges Frau. (That's not a spoiler since the spoilerish opening already revealed that.) The results are disasterous but it seems to open up a way for Teito to become closer to Frau. Just look at the preview! Focus on the lower middle screen. Teito...blushes. ^.^
BL hints! We have several. First, we get a love confession to Teito that sounds very...intimate for those that haven't read the manga. "Those days you were with me. Those matters, you should not be able to forget them." My thoughts? So Mikage isn't Teito's first? lol And then we have Kuroyuri. We haven't been able to establish the character as male or female yet, but I'm inclined to think that he is a boy until proven otherwise. ^.^ Haruse embraced Kuroyuri from behind...such a sweet moment. And of course we hae the preview with Teito blushing. Kawaii desu! Desu desu! *dies from weaboo-ness*
7/14/09 ~ Tuesday 11:00 pm - Tokyo ~ 10:00 am - NY
Status: hungry ~ Listening to: me typing quickly
I bought snacks for my office and church friends. I still have some more food related omiyage to get, but I bought some things that were not food related. The things I bought today have a summer theme to it...since it's summer. ^.^ There are only a few things that are related to summer in Japan and they're pretty simple, but I hope my friends like them. I actually bought the stuff at a place near my school which is good in case I need to buy more.
Afterwards, I headed to Ikebekuro so that I check out the usual stores. But first, I stopped by a store and picked up something for P-chan. ^.^ Then I headed to K-books 3 where I bought a another little something for P-chan and Pearl-chan along with a Gundam 00 calendar and Kuroshitsuji playing cards for one of my office friends, VC. I went to K-books 2 next to buy the rest of the Junjou Romantica manga that WL requested along with 2 vol. from Haru wo Daiteita. Animate was my last stop and they had all the new stuff that was announced for July...so of course I had to buy something. ^^; They also had some old stuff too that they took out to finish selling, including the Junjou Romantica clear bookmarks. o.O I ended up buying the bookmark, the new Viewfinder clear bookmarks and the new Viewfinder bromide cards. ^^; Purchases in hand, I headed home.
7/13/09 ~ Monday 9:16 pm - Tokyo ~ 8:16 am - NY
Status: busy ~ Listening to: Senritsu no Flare - CooRie (D.C.II ED) Listen or Save
my room...omiyage and kitty
Pearl-chan's larger then life, Nyanko-sensei arrived over the weekend and looks fantastic. I will be delivering it to her upon my return to NY this coming weekend. After work today, I went to the famed Ameyayoko in Ueno to buy snacks which I hear are cheaper then usual. Ameyayoko is definitely good to pick up omiyage and I was even able to find stainless steel Doraemon fork and spoon for my church friend, larkspur. The place is reminiscent of the night markets (or markets in general) in Taiwan. The price was certainly cheaper and I was able to buy tons of snacks for my office (back in NY, ^.^) friends as well as for church. I even bought cherries at a good price. I also got green tea powder for okaasan since she likes the powder...for some reason. ^^; Afterwards, I headed home to the BookOff near my station to pick up some manga at WL's request. I couldn't get everything she wanted so I'll be buying the rest tomorrow elsewhere. (Ikebekuro maybe?)
Tomorrow, I'll be buying some more omiyage for my office friends and some more for church as well. Busy is me....
7/12/09 ~ Sunday 5:20 pm - Tokyo ~ 4:20 am - NY
Status: satisfied ~ Listening to: Sepia - D-51 (Blue Dragon OP) Listen or Save
reaching up to the sky
A new opening hails the new season of Fullmetal Alchemist ep. 15 by NICO Touches the Wall. The opening isn't as catchy as the first season...but I'm sure it will grow on me with time. ^.^ New opening also introduces new characters, the first being the young girl from Xing with the pigtails and panda. Also...Alphonse picked up another 'neko'. roflol The seiyuu of Ling is non other then Suoh Tamaki's Miyano Mamoru. Sugoi! Now Tamaki really IS a prince. ^.^ I recognized the voice right away. This second season is going to be pure manga stories so new scenes for both past and new anime fans. Of course, although some scenes are familiar, there are new details that are from the anime. My fav scene so far? The aweseom fights of the Elric brothers with Ling's bodyguards. Two words: bombs away!
Since I'm reading the manga version, I never really knew the Xing's term for alchemy, but it's not renkinjutsu but rensenji. BTW, Al knows a new trick which I love from the manga and totally love in the anime. Yay for Al!
Ending song I like titled 'Let it Out'. The scenes are dynamic with each character on their own followed by some images of Ed and Al when they were young. The next episode previews show the acknowledgement in loss of a friend though they gain new ones in this episode....
1:40 pm - Tokyo ~ 12:40 am - NY ~ Status: contemplative
nothing in my heart more painful
Kyaaaa....I'm loving Pandora Hearts more and more. ^.^ After many days of hectic running about, I was finally able to sit down and watch ep. 15 of it...and was totally drawn into the story. This episode is one of the most powerful in this story so far and has alot of elements that can be picked upon to draw more meaning in the story. Pearl-chan has been giving me hints as to the 'behind the scenes' motions via what she learned from the manga and what may as well end up being the plot-behind-the-plot. But even without those hints, this episode alone pushes the limits to human emotion.
But enough purple prose. Oz and the others are still trapped within Alice's memories. The scenes of Gil running to Oz's aid is brillant as are the convos which Oz has with Alice inside his mind. The notion of 'I want to protect you so I will destroy everything' is in play but destroying what hurts the most might not be the answer Alice is truly seeking. Oz grabbing onto Alice and them both falling into Gil's arms...saids alot about the relationship between the three. BL-wise (as mentioned before) I think this will be the one and only time I'll accept a bisexual threesome in a main character of Oz. ^^; This RavenxOzxAlice pairing is a bit too strong for me to think of breaking right now.
The ending is a bit of a surprise with where Oz and Alice finally ends up. So now the question becomes...where can we hide such a big rabbit?
12:52 am - Tokyo ~ 11:52 am 7/11 - NY ~ Status: tired ~ Listening to: Pearl-chan talking on the comp
Ponyo and Gundam and more
Today was an insanely busy day...but in a good way. Check the link for pics and details of today: the rundown being the Ghibli museum, Gundam in Odaiba and Shinjuku.
Even though the Gundam officially opened today, it was actually unveiled friday night. o.O They had a ceremony and everything. (Another event that I missed. >.<) Animevice links to some vids of the occasion that had the seiyuu of Amuro Ray in attendence along with Gackt. (Yes, I'm kicking myself for not finding out about this.)
Director Takuji Endo died on 7/8 as reported on animenewsnetwork. He was the director for many reasons, my favorites being the X OVA, Record of Loddess and most notably Zetsuai 1989. I'm really sad to hear about this since Zetsuai 1989 was very well done and he will be missed in the BL world.
7/11/09 ~ Saturday 12:35 pm - Tokyo ~ 11:35 am 7/10 - NY
Status: happy ~ Listening to: me typing
a bit more shopping
I first ventured to K-books 3 on my own before meeting up with Fighter. I found 4 Gundam 00 shijitaki that I wanted...so I ended up buying it. ^^; I also bought a poster by Odagiri Hotaru-sensei and another shijitaki for a friend. ^.^ Then I headed to Animate to meet with fighter. I bought something Nyanko-sensei related for Diana-chan as well as a Hello Kitty strap for my godsister, Christine-neechan. Actually, I bought a keychain first and then realized my mistake for grabbing the wrong thing. Same kitty charm, different item. >.< I immediately asked them if I can change it...even though Animate has a no-change policy. ^^; I spoke with the person in charge and he said that it will be for only this time. 'Tokobetsu'. ^.^ Of course, I thanked him profusively. Fighter and I also bought something Eva related in order to get our second stamp for our freebie postcard. (The first stamp was at the movie theater.)
a bit of Eva
Afterwards, we headed to Sunshine 60 in order to go to the EVA exhibit. It was actually in the observatory. Click here for thoughts and pics at Sunshine 60. ^.^
Sunshine 60 is a HUGE shopping mall. It takes over several blocks has an aquarium as well as a planetarium in the building. o.O Fighter and I will definitely be exploring it more in the future. For the evening, we just went to some stories so we could do some browsing. ^.^
I'm going to the Ghibli museum for a little while before meeting Fighter at Mitaka station. Then we're heading to Odaiba for the giant Gundam official opening. What happens next...we'll find out tomorrow! ^.^
7/9/09 ~ Thursday 11:25 pm - Tokyo ~ 10:25 am - NY
Status: amused ~ Listening to: Snowstorm - Kugimiya Rie (Rosario + Vampire CAPU2 OST) Listen or Save
Episode 14 of 07 Ghost has it's usual mix of humor and seriousness. I must say this though, Burupya's super teary-eyed face is the cutest thing ever! *glomps Burupya* Teito is off for some midnight training and leaves Burupya behind. The enemy points out something interesting...Frau-zombies are Teito's bodyguard. Castor...you're a genius! ^.^ Of course, the funny moment is when Teito steps on the 'path' in order to run. lol
BL hint of the episode: Hakuren watching Teito change. ^.^ He even refers to Mikage and Teito's relationship as 'brothers'. His exact line was 'So he's like a brother to you.' Me: Of course not! They're lovers! ^-^ Another BL hint is Frau's words to himself in remark to what Labrador said. The strangeness in his voice...and my favorite line of 'If only someone could ease the burning fire....' ^-^
10:05 pm - Tokyo ~ 9:05 am - NY ~ Status: contemplative
Today's shopping was at Nakano Broadway where I bought a shirt for my ex-co-worker (since he requested one ^.^) as well as something for Alby-kun. ^.^ I also bought a Kanjani8 clear file for iceblueaya and a Hello Kitty charm for someone at church (since she requested one.) Tomorrow, I will be meeting fighter where we will make our rounds of Ikebekuro. I'll also be picking up a few more souveniors at that time.
Tomorrow is also a full day of teaching...ganbarrimasu!
7/8/09 ~ Wednesday 9:25 pm - Tokyo ~ 8:25 am - NY (EDIT)
Status: hungry ~ Listening to: my tummy grumbling
card buying frenzy
Upon my return to Shibuya Mandarake, I bought the 4 Loveless telephone cards that I didn't buy the first time. ^^; They were way overpriced...but I love them too much to let them go. I also found and bought another Gundam 00 artbook (the newest one that just came out) which wasn't much cheaper since it was recent. However, it was another 'can't put down' moment. ^^; I picked up a Yu Yu Hakusho doujin by Kouga Yun-sensei for Theresa-neechan (since she likes Kouga-sensei as well) and a pencil board for another friend. Shopping down, I headed home.
no passing grade, no problem
My Japanese assistant teacher and I was discussing a few things about the school system in Japan. We know already of the high level of difficulty in entrance exams for good highschools and universities...but there is some things that I didn't know. For one thing, the 'ladder system' actually applies to all elementary and junior high schools. What it means is that any student can proceed to the next grade even if he/she misses school, doesn't go to class or gets bad grades. o.O Highschool is when the 'leftback' system (that we know so well in the States) applies. For it to not apply in elementary and junior high...that's pretty surprising. Taiwan doesn't have such a system and much of the Taiwanese school system is influenced by the Japanese.
That make me seriously wonder...how do students motivate themselves to study? Apparently it's to prepare themselves for the entrance exams in their 3rd year. Obviously the entrance exams are important if they want to go to a good school...but all those years of studying when you're automatically able to go to the next grade...wow. Only a few students I know never shows up in class because they're purposely truant, but most are present and attempting to working hard. That shows alot of effort in the part of the students. Workaholics at such a young age.... ^^;
Yay for more Yellow!
Arigato, Pearl-chan for pointing me to this news! Tateno Makoto-sensei seems to love doing sequels to series that have ended for some time. Not complaining at all...these continuations are nice surprises since I always love to revisit the story and read more about about her characters. 801 Media will be putting out the 2 vol. omnibus and the Yellow sequel which is fantastic news. Yellow was originally under the DMP label, but the rest will be under the 801 Media label. The omnibus will basically put 2 books in one volume. Like the article states, the sequel has only been out on cellphones (since Japan love to do everything on their cells...especially reading BL. ^.^) so I'm interested in seeing what they'll do.
7/7/09 ~ Tuesday 9:30 pm - Tokyo ~ 8:30 am - NY
Status: hungry ~ Listening to: Sono Koe ga Kikitakute - Satou Rina, Inoue Marina and Chihara Minori (Minamike ~Okawari~ ED) Listen or Save
Happy Tanabata Festival!
May your wishes shine with the brillance of stars, lighting up the sky and touching the heart of a single soul.
Today is Valentine's day in Taiwan and the Tanabata festival in Japan...though the festival itself might as well be a Valentine's day with lovers writing their wishes on the same branch. ^^; I didn't go to any festival area even though I have a yukata on hand. After school was the usual Ikebekuro run...only this time I didn't buy anything! *gasp* lol I can't say the same for when I go to Shibuya tomorrow. ^^; I did do more reconnaissance for souveniors and I will probably be buying them on friday when I go to Ikebekuro with fighter.
Since today is a special day, we have a special lunch at school. As tradition, we have the ingredients on our plate for handrolled sushi aka. maki.
The main 'fillings' include ike, egg, cucumber and even cheese. Of course, you eat them all separately. Maki is easy so I won't be doing a tutorial about 'how to make maki'. However, the steps are simply taking a piece of nori, put rice on it, add a bit of ume jam and place ike or whichever one you want inside. Roll and eat! ^.^
7/6/09 ~ Monday 11:30 pm - Tokyo ~ 10:30 am - NY
Status: tired ~ Listening to: AC running
not counting pencil boards anymore
So, my latest venture of Ikebekuro brought me 5 more Kuroshitsuji mini pencil boards (since they got a bunch of new/old ones) as well as an Ouran postcard set and a FMA card pass holder. I got a couple of pencil boards for a friend before heading to Animate for some souvenior research. That done, I headed home. But not before I went to KFC to try the cookies and cream crusher. It wasn't anything special but it was reasonable for a semi-hot evening. ^.^
Gundam 00 panel at Anime Expo
I usually don't post about panels I don't attend, but I love the comments that I couldn't help but add it to my blog. Also any panel with Kouga Yun-sensei is automatic win. ^.^ Animevice has the highlights from the panel but I'm going to quote my fav from the article... "One attendee asked if Graham Acre and Billy Katagiri were actually a couple, and we were told straight out: there is nothing between them but friendship. But Kouga-sensei applauded the question." ~animevice lol Of course she would applaud. ^.^ I'm surprise no one asked about Tiera in a dress or even Graham's declarations of love towards Setsuna. Or everyone being gay for Lockon. ^.^
7/5/09 ~ Sunday 5:31 pm - Tokyo ~ 4:31 am - NY
Status: happy ~ Listening to: Sore Dake de... Yokatta - Nogawa Sakura (Ayakashi OP) Listen or Save
remembering the truth
I almost forgot about FMA at 5pm today...except for the fact that there is a bell that rings in the neighborhood at 5pm everyday. ^.^ The confrontation between Greed, chimeras and King Bradley is quite faithful to the manga: bloody and powerful. The revealing of who King Bradley is and hearing 'Father' speak...is very intense. In truth, this is a pretty intense episode...being that so much happens. I don't feel that the series is speeding up any longer. Yet, it still feels very densely packed. Alphonse finally relives a bit of his past in seeing the doors of Truth...albiet it was when the chimera's blood spilt upon the transmutation circle inside of him. That scene always gets to me. >.<
As I was mentioning to animemiz, the anime may have finally caught up with where it split up from the manga in the first tv series. The appearance of Greed in the first tv series marked his backstory along with everything that it entailed...mainly the appearance of Dante and who the homunculus really are. In short, the current tv series can continue with the manga strain. And behold...the next episode marks the appearance of manga characters. We have the girl and prince from Xing along with their crew. Yay for chibi panda! Now I wonder if we'll get that bathroom scene where Ed comes out of the shower with the panda acting as censorship.... ^.^
2:10 pm - Tokyo ~ 1:10 am - NY ~ Status: content
a little corner in Rome
I spent most of Saturday evening watching this series in it's entirety. Slept late...but happy I saw it all. ^.^ The anime Ristorante Paradiso has a similar story-stlye to Antique Bakery, but they're definitely very different. Both are slice-of-life, culinary inclusive, but the premise and drive of both stories are different. The story dives deep into the past of the restaurant and the various characters. Some gets more of a backstory then others...which makes sense since with an 11 episode series, you can't go into every one of the characters.
I really like Nicoletta's determination to work...and her maturity to see her mother without revealing all to her mother's husband. The only thing that makes me O.O is that she fell for an older, OLDER man. Allow me to clarify, falling for an older man is somewhat acceptable, but the second episode was just too fast for everything else...but I think that was the main point. ^^; I enjoy the interactions of the characters with each other, especially of those that pertain to the past...although Claudio's past still pisses me off. That was the part I didn't like. Sexual harrassment, bullying...in a high classed restaurant. >.< His personality was also too meek for my tastes. I suppose he improved (personality-wise) so yay for him. ^.^
The artwork for the series is light and simple. The character designs are straight from Ono Natsume-sensei with defined lines and softer features on the face. The background is truly Antique Bakery style since there are some noticable CG elements in the buildings, doors and most prominently, the menus. Like Antique Bakery though, I felt that they blend well together.
I just have a few comments to say concerning the main point that the series takes place in Rome and not in Japan. Besides the obvious notion that they say 'grazie' and 'prego' among other Italian words, there are no 'itadakimasu' and 'ojomashimasu' phrases. Also, people shake hands with the absence of bowing. I am happy for such details since it gives proper flavor to the story. I knew the writers would be smart enough to include these details, but it's always nice to acknowledge them. ^.^
Overall, an enjoyable series and not one I need to delve too deeply into. The ending was nice and has hope for more growth between Nicoletta and Claudio...even though the age gap still makes me O.o . lol I can deal with older/younger guys but older guy/younger girl alludes me. ^^;
some releases from Anime Expo
Anime Expo is coming up to it's last day this weekend and already I see some awesome licenses coming out. The ones I'm interested in include Kouga Yun-sensei's Crown of Love series (which I'm REALLY happy to see stateside) as well as Yoshinaga Fumi-sensei's Ooku. Anime-wise, Rightstuf has two awesome series (among others) which are both seasons of Junjou Romantica and Antique Bakery. *adds them all to wishlist*
7/4/09 ~ Saturday 7:40 pm - Tokyo ~ 6:40 pm - NY (EDIT)
Status: hungry ~ Listening to: Beautiful World - Utada Hikaru (Neon Genesis Evangelion Rebuild ED) Listen or Save
Happy July 4th!
Even though I'm in Japan and there are no fireworks in my area, I still hope that these lights brighten up your night sky. ^.^ Make wishes upon them so that your dreams will fly farther and carry the brillant stars that burn in your minds even as the sparks die out.
the beginning of souvenior shopping
This weekend marks the official beginning of me buying omiyage for friends and family. But mostly friends. ^^; I headed over to Nakano Broadway for a bit of research on what I will be buying. I picked up something for iceblueaya as well as gathered some ideas of what to get for my office and church friends. I ended up buying two Detective Conan shijitaki boards and a Loveless doujin for myself. Couldn't resist even though I'm on a tight budget. ^^; Food/snack shopping will happen sometime next weekend at Ameyoko dori in Ueno...which is a famous street for selling good snacks and omiyage. For now...I'm off to watch more anime!
Even Pandora Hearts is using that term which was first made famous in Xxxholic. Oz is invariably tied to both Alice and Gilbert...but what is unknown is how much Alice and Gilbert really share. Their ties may be even closer to each other then their own bonds with Oz. This may be the only series that I will have to agree with a threesome pairing since I love Alice and Oz's relationship as much as I love Oz and Gilbert's. ^.^ But more is revealed as Oz steps into their past in ep. 14.
14 marks the beginning of a a new season in many anime series so it is also inevitable that we'll get a new ending. I agree with Pearl-chan...I'm not as fond as this ending as I am of the previous one. The ending is nice enough accompanied by the beautiful manga art...but for a dark series as this one, something so light hearted seemed inappropriate. (On the otherhand, I could've said the same for the first ending to Kuroshitsuji which was 'Alive' by Becca which is one of the cutest endings I've seen. ^^;) I eagerly await the next episode where more is revealed. The one question remains...how do humans become Chains?
Oz is tied to Alice and Gilbert...and he refuses to let them go....
1:25 pm - Tokyo ~ 12:25 pm 7/3 - NY (EDIT) ~ Status: hyper
back to the kendo club
In order to make up the hours for leaving earlier on tuesday, I stayed an extra hour. I was finished with lesson plans so I decided to drop in on the kendo club with camera in hand. Alas, I couldn't find the supervising teacher so I couldn't ask for pics. ^^; However, I received the same welcome as before. As I came up the stairs (since the kendo practice is on the second floor of the dojo) the students greeted me and one of them came up and gave me chair. ^-^ Kyaaa...why can't American kids be this nice/respectful? lol I was there later then my visit before so they were already well into their practice sessions and all decked out in their protection gear. I saw the different ways they handled their bamboo sword as well as various footwork and practice swings. It is practice, but every hit is real. They are directed to hit the arm and the head...which is of course protected. With every attack, they shout. Not words, but the shouting increases the power they use. It was enjoyable watching them for half an hour. As I rose to put my chair away, someone came and did it for me. If I could hug them, I totally would! Kawaii!
and on to Ikebekuro!
Me and fighter were both worried that about not being able to buy the tickets again...especially since we were both running later the usual. We ended up meeting each other on the street and practically ran for the theater. Thank goodness there were still tickets. However, the ones for the first floor were only for the sides, but the balcony seats still had middle seats available. Pros of this theater: we get reserved seating so no worries about going early to get a good seat. Cons: the first floor was flat...meaning everyone on the same level, but the balcony was slanted like typical modern theaters. Of course, we chose the balcony seats. All prices were the same regardless of where you sat. Tickets in hand, we went off for our usual rounds.
We hit Mandarake where fighter found another FMA doujin by Idea which she bought. We looked at some others before heading to K-books 3 where I found the mini-clear file by Odagiri Hotaru-sensei that I was looking for. I also bought some things for friends. We then headed to Animate where I bought another Gundam 00 shijitaki. After browsing, we left for the convenience store to pick up a couple of snacks and a pizza (I think the katakana was pizza) nikuman for my dinner. ^.^ Then to the theater....
spoiler-free: Evangelion 2.0 you can (not) advance
As all movies go, there are merchandise sold only at the theaters for the movie. That includes regular movies and not just anime ones. We checked out what was sold but didn't buy anything. To see scans of the movie pamphlet, here are some scans. We headed up to our seats. One thing to note about Japanese watching movies...they don't speak, laugh or make any sound. o.O When something funny happens... *complete silence* ^^; Wow, I wonder if they react at all during a comedy. Total opposite to when I went to see the FMA movie. People cheering for their fav characters... ^^;
The trailers show the Disney movie, 'Bolt' as well as Tales of Vesperia, Macross Frontier and even 'Harry Potter: The Half Blood Prince'. The trailers even included the merchadise they are going to sell for the movie. Maybe I want a Gryffindor cellphone chain.... ^^; lol
The movie was awesome. The new character Mari doesn't get too much screentime which was something I was worried about. As a new character, Anno-san really made it so people understand that she is still a side character. Her screentime with Shinji was also limited which is great since I didn't want her taking too much time when I prefer him interacting with the others.... ^-^ Asuka's name changed didn't affect her personality which was something that people were concerned about. Unlike the first movie, the storyline is very different from the tv series, but everything feels the same as ever. The changes were well done and everything looks fantastic. Very smooth storyline and the surprise changes were great. It being this awesome is no surprise since everyone from the first series came back to do this.
One thing to note concerning the music is that tense action sequences are paired up with light hearted music. This kind of opposites in media is an art in itself though I can't remember what the concept is called. In either case, the alteration and perhaps irony of something so serious with such light music seems to intensify the situation even more.
spoilerrific: Evangelion 2.0 you can (not) advance
This will not be that spoiler-y but I will mention some details about certain parts of the movie. I can't get too detailed since I only understood up to a point...but I surprised myself with how much I did understand. Perhaps it's because I knew the series so well that it transcended language. ^.^ Anyway, for more detailed, spoilerrific summary, check out here.
The movie opened in English which made me think, "so they knew gaijin would be watching this!" lol Mari is apparently a Japanese American and the characters speaking English are quite good...although Kaji speaking English gave me a doubletake. ^^; Asuka's initial appearance was changed...cutting straight into a fight which was actually a pretty awesome entrance. Her last move (flying kick) is reminisent of her and Shinji's dance/fight in the tv series. (Fans probably picked that up. ^.^) When Asuka moved in with Shinji and Misato, she went through a similar scene as Shinji did from the first movie. Fighter and I loled quietly...but the rest of the audience was silent. ^^; Another funny moment was when they went to a marine laboratory and they needed to go through several levels of washing and decontamination. I loved every moment of it. roflol
Many of the angels changed and the one with the giant eyes that came out of the sky was a complete surprise since it was initially a ball. That fight was one of my fav from the movie since Shinji actually had more an indepth role rather then holding the angel up via an AT field. The fight with the angels certainly became more gruesome but that was apparent from the first movie. The biggest surprises are what happens to Asuka and Rei at the end. o.O
My favorite scene includes a scene between Kaji and Shinji. *paraphrasing* Kaji: Do you want to go on a date with me? Shinji: Date? I'm a man! Kaji: I know.... *leans in closer* Me: O.O Kiss him already! What happens? Watch the movie! I love that scene! <3
Rei and Asuka seems to fall in love or like him more and more. It is more apparent in their interactions with him and with each other. Shinji is actually becoming a likable character in this movie. He isn't as whiny and mopey. I love the scene near the end when he states, 'I'm Ikari Shinji, the pilot of Eva 01!' Yay for growing a backbone! Me and fighter was cheering at that moment. (Cheering quietly though. ^.^)
Anno-san is teasing us! Kaworu got only like three short scenes in this movie. ^^; His major appearance will be in the third movie as the previews has shown us. But he looks as sexy as ever.... *drools* The credits had a PlanitB mix of 'Beautiful World' by Utada Hikaru. As customary, Misato did the preview for the next movie which is Neon Genesis Evangelion Rebuild: Q for Quickening with her usual 'Service service!'
After the movie, fighter and I took sticker pics with Eva movie themes. The pic of the machine is up above. ^.^ We chose one of Kaworu naked (scene from the first movie,) as well as of Eva 01. I definitely need to take more of these pics. ^.^ We also got a red postcard which is used to collect stamps. The first stamp is of Rei and of course, it's at the theater. The second stamp is from an event thingee at Sunshine City nearby and the third one you get when you buy something EVA related from Animate. The prize for collecting the stamps is an Eva postcard. ^-^ Fighter and I will be doing that next friday.
Taiwan seems to have made Hello Kitty castles. I want to live there! Like the post mentions, they look more like cottages then castles...but it's still Hello Kitty! And it's pink! *hearts* My next questions would be where is it in Taiwan and can I buy one? ^.^ I wouldn't mind getting a Hello Kitty house in Taiwan...it'll be my summer home....
Back in May, I mentioned the SPJA awards which is done through AnimeExpo (which is happening as I type.) The results have been announced so you can just hit the link for the winners. Alot of who I voted for won so yay for them! I'm sooo happy that Mokona won for best mascot since it's such an awesome character. ^-^
7/2/09 ~ Thursday 6:53 pm - Tokyo ~ 5:53 am - NY
Status: accomplished ~ Listening to: Soba ni Iru ne - Aoyama Teruma feat. SoulJa (Shion no Ou ED) Listen or Save
a fulfilling day
Today was one of my most productive days during a day off. ^^; After waking up, I breakfasted with my French friend who was going to work later then usual. Taking the opportunity, I requested her assistance in ordering some plushies for me and Pearl-chan. (Long story short...ordering limited edition is not too difficult...but requires some Japanese reading and lots of money.) We headed to the post office together and got that done with the help of the postal staff which is fantastic. Then my friend went to the subway while I walked to Nakano.
For the third time and last time, I applied for my alien registration card. Since I'll be in NY by the time my card is ready, I was given the OK to pick it up upon my return. *adds that to to-do list* Then I took the train to Shinagawa to get my multiple re-entry permit...which expires when my visa does. I was in and out of there in less then an hour...same as when I applied for my ID card. Yay again for Japanese efficiency!
Then I did my anime shopping (which I will detail in a moment) at Shibuya followed by a detour to Lawson's to buy my Ghibli Museum ticket. I'll be going on July 11 since this weekend's ticket was sold out. That done, I did some grocery shopping before heading home. Whew! I'm tired but happy that all that was done. ^.^
chatting at Shibuya
I made my way to Shibuya after the Shinagawa immigration office and headed straight to the artbooks asile. I overheard some gaijin talking about Code Geass and precipitated myself into the conversation. ^^; Turns out, they were from Texas and they were exchange students. This was their first visit to Mandarake and since one of them were looking for Sailor Moon stuff, I recommended that they hit the other branch stores. Upon stating that Ikebekuro was BL haven for fujoshi, she was determined to go. ^.^ We chatted briefly about Junjou Romantica which was what one of hte girls just started on and then I continued shopping. It's nice talking to other fans. ^.^
just a few more things...
I found the 2 Tateno Makoto artbooks that I was looking for as well as 3 Gundam Wing pencil boards that I wanted. I also bought 1 Yu Yu Hakusho and 1 Detective Conan pencil board. The most surprising purchase was 2 telephone cards from Loveless. They actually have several more, but I couldn't afford to buy more then 2 at this time. Of course, I chose my fav and hope that I'll be around to buy the rest. ^^;
Tomorrow, I will be going back to work and fighter and I be trying our best to see the Eva movie! Ganbarre masu!
a little tidbit of Axis Powers...
So...in ep. 23 of Hetalia, Italy calls Germany and states that he is in bed with Rome...and things are assumed.... Has Hetalia come out of the closet yet? It should just be labelled BL and get it over with. (Actually, I always say the same about 07 Ghost. ^^;)
The story of 07 Ghost has gotten a bit more interesting...though I still don't know where it is heading. Still, just watching it is enjoyable. ^-^ Pearl-chan has already informed me that Hakuren and Teito will be doing alot more together in the future
like sleeping together? lol (as told by the manga) but Frau is still around so I'm still rooting for them. The anime still wants us to believe he is straight with the appearance of porn lying around...accompanied by an 'oh yeah!' sound effect. lol I never hear/saw an anime utilize such an effect, but it's interesting enough. I believe it appeared in previous episodes too...like the first one?
I only have a few comments about this episode...the ideals of betrayal and trust show the bonds between Teito and Frau. Those bonds are being tested due to the presence of the Eye of Mikhail. Flashbacks are used in excess in this episode and I wonder who the 'person' is from the flashbacks...the 'person' is referring to the one 'Father' was talking about. Hm...so many mysterious... *rewatches ep. 13*
7/1/09 ~ Wednesday 11:25 pm - Tokyo ~ 10:25 am - NY
Status: confused ~ Listening to: Sora - Hearts Grow (Birdy the Mighty Decode OP) Listen or Save
no Eva movie...yet
After a loooong day at work, I went to Ikebekuro to meet fighter so that we could go see the EVA movie. However, we weren't able to buy a ticket. To clarify, we could buy a ticket but it was standing room only. I didn't know people actually buys movie tickets to stand. ^^; Instead, we will watch it on friday since the late late showing is 1100 yen which is somewhat close to the 1000 yen for ladies' night. ^^;
Prior to us failing to get tickets, we were at K-books 2 and 3. At K-books 3, I got a Junjou Romantica tote bag which is dark blue with chibi-Usagi-san, chibi-Misaki and Suzuki-san on it. My first Japanime tote. ^.^ After failing to get tickets, we headed to okonomiyaki for dinner where we ordered tuna okonomiyaki and split a chicken okonomiyaki. Since we were craving dessert (as I mentioned it ^.^) we headed to Baskin Robins for the treat.
Needless to say, the Banana Brownie Royal with chocolate oreo ice cream was delicious. ^-^
So, I was in Akihabara yesterday and I saw something that I heard about some time ago but didn't see until now. Scary toilet paper. They didn't have the toilet paper open, but they have this really nice display....
So scary that you'll poo? Maybe.... ^-^
Youka Nitta returns!
I was sooo happy when I heard the news: Youka Nitta-sensei will be releasing the last volume of Haru wo Daiteita later this year. After the tracing scandal last year, she finally returns to the manga scene. Whether this is for good or just this for now...I don't know, but any news of any sort of return from Youka-sensei is welcomed. Especially since there is some sort of ending to the series.
The only thing I'm concerned about is that I wonder if this was the planned ending or did Youka-sensei just decide to end the series for some reason...like since the fans have been waiting so long and give a conclusion to the series. I ask this question since the fans were waiting for this long, but there didn't seem to be any prospective ending in sight or any hints as to how long the series was going to be. Definitely the series is pretty long for a BL series and an ending is welcomed since inquiring fans want to see Iwaki and Katou finally come to terms with each other.
more plans for tomorrow...and next month
I'm not working tomorrow since I'm going to run errands...the major one is heading to Shinagawa immigration office for hopefully the last time to get my re-entry permit so that I can leave the country and return. My plans will start with heading to Nakano Ward office to apply for my alien registration card (for the 3rd time?!? ^^;) and then head to the post office to deal with some things. Then Shinagawa and end at Shibuya for some Japanime shopping. I also plan to stop at Lawsons to buy a Ghibli ticket for this month since there is a new movie at the Ghibli Museum. (Fighter will be coming with me to my August visit since she is busy this month. ^.^)
Last night, I got my bus ticket (for overnight travel) and hotel for my Kyoto and Osaka trip in late August. I will be busy this week solidifying my daily plans for that trip. Next week, I will solidify my plans and buy omiyage to take back to the US. *runs around the room in a frenzy*