My Weekend, Part 1

Hi again,

Long time no see!
I have been so busy since friday that I’ve had no time to update my blog. Even though I’ve only been doing this for a little bit more than a week I already miss writing if I skip a day. So I thought I should give you summary of what I have been up to these past few days during the weekend. First of all I have to say that you never have to worry about being bored in this city. There is always something exciting to do or see in Tokyo. 🙂

Friday

Friday was a really long but really good day. It started at 10 o’clock at Komaba Campus. One of the big banks here in Tokyo was there to help the new international students open up a bank account. That took almost to hours and required a lot of paper work (reading through agreements, signing papers, etc) and speaking to a bank man and go through certain procedures. But I think it worked out well so in a week I should have a Japanese bank account and new Visa Debit Card.
At first I was not sure if it was necessary for me to open one but then I decided to do so since I hope I will be able find myself a part-time job and then I’m going to need it anyway.

We had to sign some of the papers in japanese and worked really hard to make a nice signature!

Then after lunch there was a guided tour of the campus in small groups together with some of the local students. It took us one and a half hour so the campus is quite big even though it is a lot smaller than Hongo (the other campus). I thought it was really interesting to walk around and just look at everything. It’s so different from home. The campus itself looks kinda old in some places but much newer and better restored in other. There are so many buildings, high and low, big and small ones and in all shapes and sizes.

The japanese students are very active and there are a lot of sports areas on the campus. There is an athletic arena, a rugby pitch, a baseball field, tennis courts and football fields, basketball and volleyball areas and a lot more! They have a regular gym too of course. Most of the activities are conducted through the different clubs at the university, most students are part of at least one and it’s very common to spend a lot of time doing sport activities (or others) when they are not studying.

The Campus is very green and there are so many amazing trees everywhere! I really like it.

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There is an only boys car-club at the University and if you are a member you get to park your car in this spot and you apparently get to participate in certain street race (is that legal??) a few times a year. Sounds like The Fast & Furious version Tokyo to me.. 🙂
Pretty cool! Our guide is a member and he was really enthusiastic about it!

Of course we also paid a visit to the Komaba Campus Library which was huge! Tall building with many floors and sooo many books. I think it was amazing! Very impressed. I will probably spend a lot of time there.  I liked the atmosphere and the silence. The order.

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No-nonsense knowledge here people!

After the tour we went to a very interesting earthquake seminar with a geology professor specialised in, well yeah, earthquakes, especially in Japan. He explained the basics about earthquakes and tsunamis and some other natural hazards. Since I’m an earth science student I knew most of it already but it was very interesting to hear him talk specifically about Japan. He told us some their history with earthquakes and what they expect in the future and how we as new residents in Japan can prepare ous selves and of course what we should do in an emergency. We will most likely (or almost definitely) experience a quake of magnitude M6 (which is quite big) during our time here. I think it’s a bit scary of course but I cannot help feeling a little bit excited as well..

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They very clearly instructed us to prepare an emergency backpack with important and necessary things to have and food and water for three days in case of a disaster. I am almost finished with my bag! The only thing I’m missing is food and water. I’m good for more or less all the rest.

When the seminar ended at 5 pm we continued o to a welcome party arranged by the university for us. There were a few speeches from both teachers and local students before they served us drinks and food. It was more of nice gathering where people mingled than an actual party but I really enjoyed it! 😀

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We are around 100 exchange students from all over the world and it’s going to be a blast getting to know them as well as the japanese students. Everyone is so polite and has completely different backgrounds which makes it so interesting to talk to more or less anybody. It’s going to be amazing!

I only stayed until 7 before I went back to the loge to prepare for the rooftop party arranged by GoGo Nihon which Jamie had invited me to. So at 9 pm I met him just outside of Ikebukuro station (it’s the second largest and most trafficked station in Japan) and we went up to the roof of the Seibu building together. It was so big and absolutely amazing! Much people from everywhere, both japanese and westerners and everyone seems really nice. I only talked to a few though but I had a really good time.

I will definitely go to rooftop parties more often! 😀

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Meet Jamie (from Australia to the left) and Jamie (my friend from Norway to the right).
Two delightful boys. 🙂

After some more mingle and fun conversations at the rooftop the evening ended in a karaoke bar! Karaoke means singing and I hate singing in front of other people! But I did it! And I didn’t die of shame. Must have been the Gin&Tonic… 😛 It was my fist real karaoke experience and I have to give it to my friends, it was more fun than I had expected! I will probably do it again…

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Karaoke bars have really nice bathrooms… 🙂

That’s all for today I believe. I’ll tell you about the rest of my weekend tomorrow.

Have a lovely day or night wherever you are.

Good night from a stormy and very rainy Tokyo!

 

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