Wednesday, April 1, 2009

3 more days till Japan

In 3 days, after pulling an all-nighter, I'll be hopping on a plane and hopefully passing out for the entire duration of my 13 hour flight to Tokyo.

The only thing left for me to do is re-pack. Everything else has been taken care of. I had to get my Visa processed, obtain an international drivers license, get tested for TB (negative!) and cop a ticket (with frequent flyer miles. Join programs if you haven't already)

They've reserved my hotel in Tokyo, secured an apartment for me in Iwate and will be handing me my car keys once I get there. I just gotta show up.

I'm fortunate to know the peeps that I do. Friends who have traveled to the area have given me valuable advice. Others, who have lived in non-English speaking countries, are also giving me tips on picking up new languages. I'm lucky to be able to learn from their experiences.

I'm also lucky to live in the information age; there are many resources online. I've subscribed to a plethora of blogs, bookmarked tons of forums and am following new Japanese residents on twitter and friendfeed. Information overload at it's finest.

Here are some blogs, etc:
  • - News and discussion of Japan from an Afro perspective.
  • - News of Japan from an American writer living in Japan. He focuses a lot on how those who don't look Japanese are treated.
  • - How to live cheaply as a foreigner in Japan (will probably become my favorite).
  • - Hilarious rants and raves of a brotha whose been teaching in Japan since 2004.
  • - Digg-like-site for Japanese News.
  • - Podcast for learning basic Japanese.
There are a lot more, probably because I found these 2 sites early on:
  • @DannyChoo - tweets about Japan and Technology
  • @nick_ramsey - tweets about Japan and Technology
  • Most of the bloggers listed above also tweet
All quality stuff though a lot of it will become less relevant once I hit the countryside. I'll sort it all out then.

I also enabled East Asian Language Support enabled on Windows XP and found a handy FireFox add-on that translates Japanese to English, though I plan to gradually stop using it as I pick up the language.

I kinda wish I was more nervous.

3 more days...

1 comment:

  1. you are so super organised ebbie san, that's why you aren't nervous...:) you see now if it were me, who forgets sunglasses on a trip to Gambia... :)! have fun! so excited and i am not going!