May 21, 2012


I like the Japanese word for eclipse- 日食 and 月食 (nisshoku- solar eclipse, and gesshoku- lunar eclipse).  The characters are "sun, eat", and "moon, eat", respectively.  There's been a lot of hype about the annular solar eclipse today (金環食, kinkanshoku), since the Kanto region of Japan would be in the perfect position to see the full "ring of fire" (and every time i hear/read that i get the Johnny Cash song in my head).  While i failed to get the special glasses in time, the light cloud-cover this morning unexpectedly worked to my advantage!  I put on my regular sunglasses, and with the clouds as an extra little protective layer for my eyes i was able to get a pretty good look at the sun through the stages.
Last night i had  made a pin-hole camera of sorts as a backup in case i couldn't look directly at the sun with my sunglasses (though as a kid i remember staring directly into the sun sometimes because i liked the blue dot that would stay in my vision when i looked away.  I still have near-perfect vision, go figure).  Since it was cloudy for most of it, it didn't really work except for when there were little breaks in the clouds.  My camera wouldn't take a decent picture of the actual eclipse but i did get a picture of it as seen in my pin-hole box.

Enjoying my breakfast at the window so i would watch the eclipse.

After the ring of fire- the sun in my pin-hole box.

Picture from Mainichi Shimbun

Anyone else get to see the eclipse??

May 14, 2012

You're out of the frame

A bit late, but i hope all of you mothers (especially mine!) and mother-figures had a wonderful Mother's Day.  And to those of you who no longer have your mothers with you i hope you can remember the good times you had and keep those memories with you.  If you still have your mother around, don't take it for granted.  Make sure to call her up whenever you get the chance.

As a part-time mum to my 9 little ones, i can really appreciate what you full-time moms go through.. i only have to do it 8 hours a day, 5 days a week, and can go home at night to be by myself and relax a bit, and do fun things.  I can't imagine having to do it 24/7!  To all of you frazzled, sleep-deprived ladies out there, i commend you and wish you some decent sleep!

May 11, 2012

Golden Days!

Golden Week was last week.. so called because of a series of holidays that all take place during the same time, and most companies give their employees the whole week off work.  And by most companies i mean not mine.  Tuesday and Wednesday weren't holidays so i had to go in for two days of work last week.  It seems really pointless to me, and also limits my travel time.  Boo.  But what can ya do?  So i just tried to enjoy my Golden "Week" as best as i could.

Monday i met up with fellow blogger Kawaii Kaba, who came here to Japan with her bf for vacation.  To be honest i was a bit nervous about meeting up.  As much as i enjoy new encounters, i'm just not the most out-going person and the uncertainty that comes with it all just makes me nervous.  But as expected it was an enjoyable day!  :)  We met up in Yokohama- my first time in the area- and walked around, looked at the waterfront and the surroundings..

We stumbled upon the Nissan Gallery Global Headquarters!

I was quite excited.  I love Nissans.  Look at all the beautiful, shiny cars.

My first car was a Nissan though, so i could just be biased.  It was a really nice car though, until the accident!

Then we headed to Shin-Yokohama to check out the Ramen Museum.  It was bookmarked in my "Japan" list of things i wanted to do when i came here last year, so i was excited to finally go see it!  The top floor had a lot of stuff on the history of ramen, but as there was no English translation for my lazy self i didn't spend too much time trying to read about it.  There was a little gift shop too, but we headed downstairs to the main attraction- a recreation of a 1950's Japanese town, with retro-looking buildings and signs and the like.  There are nine different little ramen shops to choose from, and we ended up going with the tsuke-men, since the line was one of the shortest, lol.  It was a bit pricey as far as ramen/tsuke-men goes, and i forgot to ask for mine to be 肉抜き (without meat), but it was still very delicious!  Not the meat.. i just ate around that.  
There was a little stand selling drinks in cute little glass bottles, and i love when things are sold in glass bottles.  I feel like everything these days is made of plastic and it all just seems so cheap, so i quite enjoy when things are sold in glass.  I actually even have a little collection of glass jars and bottles that i keep around (and also my cool steel tin that my quick-cooking oats came in!).  Anyway, back on topic, i saw those drinks and we ended up getting the yogurt drinks.  It was good, and nice little dessert in a cute glass bottle that i have added to my collection. :)

The two of them were going to do some more exploring, but i opted to head home so i could get my Kansai-trip preparations done since i wouldn't have time the next couple days because of work.  
Had a bit of a surprise encounter on the train ride home though.  I fell asleep at one point, and when i woke up and looked up, i did a double-take at the guy standing in front of the door across from me.  I was 99% sure it was K-to, one of the Japanese guys that would come and hang out with us when i lived at the sharehouse.  There was still that 1% doubt in my mind, so instead of saying anything i just sat and stared (probably made me look like a creeper), hoping to make eye contact and that if it was him he'd recognize me and say something.  It had been a few months since i'd seen him last..
Anyway, i was beginning to think he'd never look away from his phone or iPod, but he finally did.  He did a double-take as well (actually, i think it might've been a triple-take!), his eyes got all wide, and he just went, "Oh!"  We waved to each other, and he took out an earphone but just kind of stood there, so i stood up and walked over to him.  We talked until we got to my station, where we both had to back-track.. the train we were on was an express train which didn't stop at his station, and i just had to take the train one station back to go get some things at the 100-yen store, so we both got on the same train again.  It was a nice coincidence and good to chat and catch up with him.  Made me miss the sharehouse!

Working on a video/photo slideshow of the Kansai trip, which i probably will get to finish sometime this weekend.  And i know i said i'd upload Disneyland pics, but since we put G-chan in charge of picture-taking and he's such a busy busy boy, i still haven't gotten any from him yet!  Hopefully i'll get to post some of those soon though, too.
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