A Travellerspoint blog

June 2012

Step by Step

Small steps. That's the key.

For now, it's an accomplishment just to be able to make it to a street with stores on it and back. So, when I reach said street, I look around a little. But I don't turn onto any new streets. I don't pull out a map. Instead, I linger around for a bit, then turn around and go back.

And one of the things I did to get to that street was go down a steep hill. So of course, I need to go up it to get back. But, apart from one misturned street, it's a straight walk back. And, able to get from a house to a store, it's now time to plan the next move.

With enough small steps, I won't get lost.

Posted by Soseki 20:34 Comments (0)


First Impressions

I was disoriented from the time I stepped off the plane. It wasn't that I was on Chicago time, though that would have been bad enough. For some reason, I was on Greenwich Mean Time, and was convinced it was about nine in the morning as I got off the plane. That made the fact that I only had two hours of light before it was dark outside even worse.

Habits I need to kill quickly: trying to read every Japanese sign and trying to eavesdrop on every Japanese conversation. While possible in the US, it would quickly drive me crazy here. Not to mention make me late for everything.

After getting through customs and immigration (at least, I think that's what I got through) and getting my bag I went outside to the waiting area. Fortunately, finding someone from the program was easy. Then it was a taxi for a while, and then I was at the house.

My host mother showed me to my room, I got about half an hour to relax, then went downstairs for dinner. Dinner taught me tons of useful things like that it's possible to eat soup with chopsticks and that there are non-sea food kinds of Japanese food like egg chicken.

After dinner my host mother tried to tell me... something. I wish I knew what. All I really got out of it was that they have cool faucets. Then she started talking about tomorrow and and Monday and I understood the words, but not the context to understand what she was talking about. So that was fun.

So was setting up wireless. Given fifteen minutes alone with a computer with a wireless connection I could have gotten it working. Trying to explain what I was doing in Japanese just complicated matters. (So did the absurdly long random numbers they had as their key.)

Seriously, though, it's... a challenge. A good one, I think. I might even be ready for strings of rapid Japanese with a bit more sleep and a bit less jet lag. If not, I have a month to get used to it.

Posted by Soseki 05:34 Comments (0)

Last sight of Chicago

O'Hare is s lot bigger than I was expecting. Probably because the last couple of places I've had time to kill had more shops before security. Though at least Atlanta almost had a Seattle's Best Coffee. From what I can tell, all O'Hare had was a lot of Starbucks. (DC didn't even have those.) I didn't have any, though.

O'Hare's big, Starbucks has Internet, even if O'Hare doesn't... so far so good.

Posted by Soseki 10:47 Comments (1)

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