It’s time for midterms, which only means one thing: Senior High School ALTs on JET across Japan are either bored out of their minds, or playing Farmville (read: bored out of their minds while clicking their mouse).  ^o^;

Anyway, I’ve got the time and internet connection to get this blog up to speed!  So let’s get to it, shall we?

Golden Week: Day 1 (Saturday, May 1st)

In September 2009, we had Silver Week, but it doesn’t happen every year.  Golden Week, however, does. It is composed of three national holidays back to back, creating a 5 day break with Saturday and Sunday early in May.  There’s also Shouwa Day just two days before the Saturday of Golden Week, so someone who took Friday off could make a 7 day combo.  Many people travel during this time, so transportation becomes ludicrously expensive.

I didn’t go outside of Fukuoka.  Instead, I hung out with some friends from that Northern Land, Kitakyuushuu, and some of their friends.  First, we went to Dazaifu Tenmanguu, of course.  (I should be an official spokesperson for that shrine! ^o^;)  There’s a garden on a pond there, but not everything was in bloom.  That doesn’t matter when you’re going for good compositions in photographs though.

Ain't it purdy?

Here’s the full version of the header photo:

What would Tachiagare Nippon think if they knew a foreigner took this photo?

I really couldn’t help myself. XDDD Oh, politics…

After that, we hopped on a train for Tenjin, which is downtown Fukuoka City.  After the 30 minute ride on the futsuu (regular train making all stops), we went to the top of the ACROS Building by climbing about 5 minutes worth of stairs, as the observation deck apparently can’t be accessed via elevator.


*Suck it in, suck it in! Model the Moustache!*

“Moustache” is the brand of the bag I’m carrying.  ^o^;

After that, we walked over to Hakata to go to the Fukuoka Asian Art Museum.  Apparently, two years ago, there was an exhibit called 「妖の園」(read as “ayakashi no sono,” meaning something like “Ghosts’ Garden”) at the Prefectural Art Museum, but during Golden Week only, it was brought back at the Asian Art Museum.  The works were really interesting.  I especially liked the work of Miyamoto Gennai (宮本源内 – I’m not 100% sure that’s how his name is read, but writing that gets me the right kanji, so…), which was detailed pen & ink manga, and SHiNPEi a.k.a. Peco, who does street fashion illustrations.  I like how he combines a meaty anime style with street fashion.  To put it more bluntly, his work is kinda ghetto. Which makes me feel at home. ^o^;

Lastly, we went to a Hawaiian bar.  We got there around 5, but they don’t start serving food till 6, so we just slowly sipped our drinks till it was time.  Now, I could’ve sworn that Japanese people didn’t start eating until everyone had their food, but I guess not.  For whatever reason, after everyone had gotten their dish, it took another 15 or 20 minutes for my dish (shrimp gratin) to come out, and the waiters were looking at us funny, presumably because no one was eating.  I started to worry that they’d forgotten my order, because again, I was thinking that it was practice in Japan as in the States to wait till everyone had their food to begin eating, so I didn’t understand why the waiters were confused. I asked the waitress after 10 minutes had passed since the last dish was brought out, and she said they were making it.  Fortunately, it was delicious.

Day 2

Less photogenic was Day 2, when I got my new HDTV.  ^o^ I really enjoy watching broadcast TV in HD, but I bought an HDTV because I’d been told that hooking a PlayStation 3 to a CRT made games look like total garbage.  Which wasn’t true in the case of the Aiwa that I had.

Ah, I haven’t explained on this blog.  When I went to buy a PS3 and HDTV, the TV I wanted wasn’t in stock, so I had to wait two weeks for the store to get it in.  In the meantime, I went ahead and connected the PS3 to the good-ol’ CRT so I could finally play Final Fantasy XIII.  I couldn’t see all the details in the game on the CRT, but the difference between that and the HD isn’t that big.  To be blunt, I think many people are riding the HD hype train and “seeing” a larger difference then what’s actually there. And yes, I did connect the two with an HDMI cable rather than AV wires.  Though it’s also possible that people bashing CRTs just have really crappy ones.

Not having cats around makes me do weird things, such as give names to electronics. Meet 東芝紀政 (Toushiba Norimasa). ^_^;;;;

Day 3

Finally armed with something capable of playing Blu-Rays and an HDTV, I cycled on down to Tsutaya and finally bought…Advent Children Complete! *fangirl squeal*

Dynamic duo, Reno and Rude, whoever don't like it it's that man's problem. ^o^ (That's what Fabolous MEANT to say.)

Oh oh, how many more pop culture references can I make in one blog post?!

Days 4 & 5

The rest of my Week That Sparkles Like Edward Cullen’s Skin in the Sunlight was spent playing FFXIII, doing laundry,  rearranging my closets, and drawing. Oh yes, and sleeping till the sane time to get up–no earlier than 11AM. Getting up before that is nothing short of an atrocity. ^o^

Then, it was back to work!