GAP Japan Diary – Beginning!

By Michael Gakuran | | Journal | Leave a comment |

Hey hey all. This is the first update from right here in Tokyo, Japan! The flight went relatively well, aside from the fact they made me put my hand luggage into the plane’s hold (is was more than double the normal weight for hand luggage, because I brought so many books with me) and as such my luggage weight came to about 34kg – 14 over the limit :/.

Fortunately they didn’t charge me, be the woman was was becoming shirty at the counter said they were more than likely to on the return flight, so I might have to use something called a ‘book post’ where I can post a certain weight in books back home for a set price, which will save me a lot, considering the air charge is 37 pounds/kg!!

I didn’t sleep much on the plane, just dozed, but I wasn’t bored like last time when we took Lufthansa, because Virgin Airways have soemthign called ‘vport’ whihc allows you to select and choose movies/tv/games/music and play then *when you want*. It’s finally good to see in-flight entertainment that is consumer-friendly ^^. I listened to an audio bok and watched several movies and tv shows, including the Japanese animation ‘Tokyo Godfathers’, which had a very good story line and great animation. It reminded me a little of watching Spirited Away for the first time, because the animation wasn’t the typical tv anime style you might find in Love Hina, Evangelion (etc). The story was about three homeless people (a man, a teenage girl and a homosexual man who dresses and acts like a woman – very funny actually) who find an abandoned baby and attempt to return it to its family. I thought it made a nice change from all the cliche storylines that are reused so much nowadays.

You may have read Dave’s journal (satoshii) already, but we also found out that we were flying on the same plane as Richard Branson. He walked down the aisle and stopped and grinned at me briefly, whereas I returned the gesture with a rather dumbfounded and puzzled look. I wasn’t quite sure where I recognised the face from until I asked to confirm with one of the flight attendants ^_^;.

Tokyo was hot again once we had collected our baggage and walked outdoors. Not quite as bad as when I went over Summer, but still uncomfortable. We took a coach to our hostel in Ichigaya, which is smaller than the hostel I stayed in in July. In the evening we went to a shrine with a huge Torii Gate and then afterwards a small group of us navigated the Tokyo train lines to get to Akihabara. It was amazing! So much neon and electrical goods galore! I bought a Canon Wordtank G50 (a Japanese electronic dictionary) for about 50 pounds less than I’d seen it online back home and a couple of the other people bought digital cameras, including my GAP partner, Jessica. I didn’t get to meet her until after we’d arrived in Japan and got off the plane, but we seen to get along quite well so far, so I’m looking forward to the placement in Hyogo a lot now ^_^.

Gtg now – I’m in the British Council building on the Internet and we have a talk from previous GAP-pers, I’ll continue later.

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