The yen is cheap, the ‘rona is tamed, and the Japan is vast and full of opportunities!
In terms of daily life, work, and free time activities I’m faced with a constant stream of novelty as well as opportunities demanding to be prioritized, as there isn’t enough time to take them all. Below’s a list of what made the priority cut.
- Daily life
- I transitioned from watching 鎌倉殿の13人 online (back in Germany) to watching it on TV. Following a TV show in Japan is a first for me (won’t miss the set airing time and lack of a pause function once I’m back in Germany though ^^).
- I’m trying out different mask types, as there’s more variety than in Europe (where it’s basically a choice between medical and FFP2).
- Got one of the new 500 Yen coins that’s around since the end of 2021.
- Events and activities
- Did part of the JR East Lego stamp rally where you’d collect Lego themed stamps at different train stations in and around Tokyo and then get a minifigure and some stickers.
- Participated in a language exchange event that was lead by a Lego serious play instructor.
- Went to a 藤原 麻里菜 exhibition and experienced futile work.
- Walked by a ポプテピピック thingy.
- Rode an N700S bullet train, which is in operation since July 2020 (shortly after I left Japan last time). Also, saw the Bullet Train movie (after some technical difficulties). There even was plenty of advertisement on the bullet train platforms.
- Did some hiking with people from the lab (金時山).
- Met up with one of the other exchange students from back in Matsuyama 2015 who’s now doing a PhD in Kōbe.
- In 2019 I discovered browsing BOOKOFFs as a fun past time. A section I always take a look at is dictionaries, and on one of my visits this time I found a 新明解国語辞典 (English Wikipedia article) in it’s forth edition (1989), which, especially in this and the fifth edition, is infamous for it’s unique definitions of words. So much so that there’s a book about it, people discuss it on podcasts, etc..
- Bought a Thinkpad Trackpoint Keybard II for a more comfortable standing setup. (… and because the damn thing doesn’t give an option to swap Fn and Ctrl I now have Ctrl mapped to CapsLock. … and since I already have Esc mapped to CapLock I now rely on XCAPE for the double assignment)
- Got a good deal on a pair of used Sony WH-1000XM4s because (1) cheap Yen, and (2) it was a model someone had originally purchased outside of Japan (i.e. the “power on”, “Bluetooth connected”, etc. sound clips it plays are in English instead of Japanese).
- Had a pair of glasses made at Zoff in like 15 min for 5,500 Yen *cries in Germany glasses prices*.
On to the next month!