March 30, 2006


This weekend I made a brief but exciting visit to the big smoke that is Tokyo. The reason - a meeting of old friends:

You can probably work out which are my friends.....

After a good chat and a (very) little sleep we set about doing all things Japanese as an immediate introduction to Nihon. On the menu was print club, karaoke, genki drinks, sushi, izakayas, temples, shrines and crazy shopping.

As they work their way to Hiroshima for another weekend meeting, it leaves me very happy if a little unsettled to have a reminder of home in such proximity. Could it be a touch of home sickness - maybe not as I am probably the happiest I have ever been. Perhaps just the anticipation of friends seeing my life here in Hiroshima. The slightly revised menu for this weekend will likely include Miyajima, Peace Memorial Park, shopping and as many bars, restaurants and coffee shops as we see fit.

The next few days is also a time of sayonaras with Naoko leaving our company tomorrow and Vman's farewell night on Saturday. Best of luck to all.

March 18, 2006


This week, amongst other things, I have watched Graduation Ceremonies at two of my kindergartens.
These included - mothers crying; an array of kimonos; fathers glued to the back of their videocams, too busy recording what they should be enjoying; fathers being late; skirts slightly too short for such an occasion; kids fidgeting; kids oblivious to all the pomp and ceremony; kids crying; a Kindergarten showing off it's connections; a Kindergarten making a show of caring about more than money; receiving Elementary School principals waffling at length; me stifling yawns; me stifling laughs at inopportune moments; ripples of laughter as I utter my 'omedetou gozaimasu' to 180 kids who have never heard me speak Japanese; a vague sense of emotion toward my favoured students; lots of bowing; hasty exits before getting dragged into stilted conversations; a lovely bunch of flowers; an airing for my suit and relief that this time next year I will likely be doing something completely different.

In complete contrast, I also watched what is either the best film ever made or the worst (I'm tending toward the latter). Rented on a whim, You Got Served features the strangely shaped:

some horrendous acting and all manner of crazy dance moves. If you've got a large amount of time to kill, do it.

March 15, 2006

New tings

So, I've been on a little blog holiday as I have actually had loads of better things to do!! I drafted a post back in February after getting quite excited about the collaboration of a couple of favoured musicians - namely Jack White and Brendan Benson.
Working together under the guise of The Raconteurs, they have a brilliantly retro site here and a couple of super songs available for listening.

Another discovery is a band called Midlake (go here) who have a song (as certain people will testify!) called Roscoe that I can listen on repeat for far, far too long. The link takes you to a little website called, into which I have recently been inducted. For all those of you in England, the following comment should briefly summarise the site if you are yet to visit:
"wow you're on myspace!! Welcome to being an american highschool/college kid" - courtesy of Danimal.
But I must say the music section is top class with downloads-a-plenty and all your favourite bands. It's a whole new world.

Speaking of whole new worlds, I recently took a trip to this little place:

with a view to finding a perfect spot to live with a certain special someone. It is all so exciting - I can't wait!

But for now, I will be very happy with all in Hiroshima, a lovely new pair of shoes and a long awaited visit from old friends........