Left Osaka rather suddenly, and a month earlier than previously planned, to head back up to the hustle and bustle of the Tokyo area.
Found a part-time job of sorts from Craigslist, offering a room for free in a guesthouse in exchange for teaching English conversation 2 days a week at an Eikaiwa Club. I called the owner on Saturday the 11th.. said he'd love to interview me in person and show me the "school" and the guesthouse (which are all together in one building- the "school" area in the front, and the rooms, kitchen, shower, and toilet in the back area), so we agreed to meet on Wednesday the 15th.
Monday the 13th i took a day-trip down to Hiroshima to visit an old friend who's there for a summer study abroad. It's about a 5-hour trip by bus, so i caught an early bus down and made it there just after noon. We met up (she had brought her roommate with her) and had lunch- okonomiyaki, both Osaka-style and Hiroshima-style!- then wandered around to look in some fun stores. We all then went for some parfaits and to sit and chat a little before the two of them had to head back to their dorms to finish their homework and start writing their reports. I killed time around town, walked around and managed to find the A-bomb Dome and wandered around the surrounding park area. Also walked down the huge shopping street before taking the street car back to the station to wait for my bus back. Got some food from the convenience store for dinner. Boarded the bus just after 10pm.
Arrived back in Osaka just after 5am the next day. Sleeping on the bus is not exactly restful, so as soon as i got back to the guesthouse and showered i passed out in bed for another 5 hours, before getting up to pack. Then went out and about with one of the guys from the guesthouse. I had mentioned before about my favourite food being Mexican food, so he had found a supposedly good Mexican food place online so we went to try it out. It was pretty freaking good, indeed! Definitely not disappointed. They even had a "vegetarian plate", and it came with soup and salad; 2 tacos that came with veggies, corn, lettuce, tomatoes, refried beans, sour cream, and guacamole; tortilla chips; and quesadilla.
I then had to go catch my overnight bus to Tokyo around 9pm. It was really sad to have to say goodbye to all the people i'd become so used to seeing everyday at the guesthouse. :(
All the guys here though are really nice, though it's just not quite the same. Too much English here i suppose, haha. I'm used to being the only American, and for everyone around me to be speaking Japanese (or Korean or Taiwanese).
Anyway, got in to Tokyo around 7am Wednesday, and headed over to Ueno to check in at the hostel S and i had stayed at previously. I was at the last station, about to head up the stairs and make the walk to the hostel, but as soon as i got off the train i noticed the handle on my big suitcase was really bent. I knew that wasn't good, and of course and i was trying to straighten in back out it completely snapped off. Sooo, no handle to pull my suitcase! I had to drag it by the small handle on the top and carry the duffel bag that previously had sat on top of my suitcase over my shoulders, along with my backpack and bag of leftover groceries that i didn't want to leave behind. Not a fun walk at all. But as soon as i checked in i got to trim my hair (finally! It was getting scraggly), shower, and relax a bit before heading out to Saitama to meet the guy from the Eikaiwa Club. The "interview" was hardly an interview. He just showed me the 'teaching' guidelines and was all "You think you can do it?". Of course. So then he showed me around, asked which room i wanted, gave me the keys and told me i could move in tomorrow (Thursday).
So i did just that! Got up early to check out, and brought my luggage over in 2 trips, since i certainly didn't want to have to carry it all at once with my stupid handle-less suitcase again.
Yesterday, Friday, was my first day on the job. It wasn't half bad. There's no structure at all, really. There are 2 of us native speakers per day, plus Owner Man, and the students come in when they want. They're then separated by speaking ability, and then placed with one of us and we start conversations. We're supposed to correct them if they make any mistakes and have them repeat the sentence correctly. We're also encouraged to introduce new words or grammar to them too as the conversations progress. But yeah, no textbooks or anything. They can take notes if they want, but it's all just conversation.
Some more life changes will be happening soon, but as this post is already quite long, and as i don't really want to jinx anything, i'll wait to write about those events as they start to happen! :D