Random thoughts, comments, observations and general fluff from a random bint who left London at the end of September 2004 to embark on a new life and new adventures in Tokyo, land of the cute.... and is leaving mid-June 2010 - and counting!

Sunday, April 22, 2007


Today is Monday. I'm not working. I have no plans. Yesterday was Sunday. I didn't work. I had no plans.

This is the FIRST time this YEAR that I've not had some kind of work or social commitment on one or both of my days off. I love time by myself. Actually, I CRAVE time to myself. No wonder I've been so cranky and panicky lately. It all makes sense now!

Which of course begs the question again of - do I REALLY have the time to start playing the 'dating game'?

Anyway, what should I do next as there are about 27 so far out of 67 (and rising) that have piqued my interest a bit:

a) give each a personalised and considered response.
b) write a generalised blurb about me and send it to each and see what their responses are.
c) just demand a photo.
d) give no more information about me yet but throw them a question such as 'tell me about your ideal Sunday'.
e) other
f) be stricter on my criteria from the start and cut down the list (which I think I'll have to do but how do you decide from only a few lines???

I deleted the two kind offers from Nigerians to share their fortunes with me but here's a selection of the no-runners and a Jo guide on how to not get attention when replying to an ad:

1. Take notice of the advert itself. IF someone requests 'conversational English' - then replying in Japanese (all be it in romaji) really isn't going to cut it. Neither is making it obvious you've used an electronic translator.

2. As above. Saying you don't speak English well, is also not going to get you any further.

3. Telling me nothing about you - uninspiring and boring.

4. Telling me how great your teeth are. Er, so what?

5. General OVER selling or UNDER selling.

6. Sending me a truly terrible picture AND no information about you.

7. Spelling mistakes! Use spell check, FFS!

8. Assume right off the bat I'm only after sex.

Some of the offenders:

hi there, im from tokyo and from Asia.Can we have a coffee in Shibuya? or somewhere in Tokyo, perhaps?

Can I try this audition?...Im a tokyo,shibuya-born JM,tall,cool,athletic,well-ecucated,tender and.....very normal.How about this?

(I have) perfect teeth

Hello!I am interested in your message.I am japanese male, cute?!, chatyt, independent, guy.Of course, no nutter, freak.I speak english.Regards

Hello, Your ad caught my eye! I enjoy having great times. I am 182 cm and 81 kilos. I am athletic and I am at the gym 5 days a week. If this sounds like someone your looking for just email me back.

Hi, why don't give me a chance to try out? I would not disappoint you!

Hi,,,Iam here interesting in you,send me your e-mail add

I'm educated,very kind handsome (?)Japanese male.31,178cm,72kg.

I am 34 yrs, clean,honest and fun guy. I live and work in central tokyo and available in daytime. lets have fun together.what do you say...I know how to pleasure woman

I am looking for some comoany for fun times

I saw your message and I start to write .. I'm X, 33 living in Y and working in Z..I'm not too chatty.. how about normal Japanese man ? if you are interested.. lets talk more

I am 35years old, 180cm, fit, generous, smart

I am early 40s Western executive gentleman... I am very athletic, fit, and nice looking. I dress well, and have traveled and lived well all my life. I am looking for a regular social & romantic companion when I travel to Tokyo, as I do weekly on business...normally stay at [big expensive posh hotel].

Hi!How about your life here in Japan?I live in X.My name is Y.I like music very much.So I want to make friends who loves music.Music makes us happy even when we are very sad ,I think.My job is to sell big buildings.I like my job very much.I love sushi very much.So I want to go to eat sushi with you some day.


P.S. I'm finding this all really amusing but honestly haven't decided whether or not it IS something I want to pursue or not. (See point at beginning of post about 'me' time).

Friday, April 20, 2007

Blogspiration anyone?

I seem to have run out of blog steam but I'm sure this is only temporary. I blame it on the weather. We had a few days of blissful early summer, and then it all turned to cack again.

My time is an ongoing cycle of work, sleep, eat, drink, sing, shop - so nothing new there!

I DID buy an awesome pair of pink glittery Converse. But I guess that's only interesting to me. Oh, my pink iPod Shuffle is still very cute. And still without music. And I STILL haven't sorted out my photos either. Sorry. I'm very concerned that my computer is going to die on me as it's being quite unpredictable and so, until it's calmed down, I'm reluctant to put more pictures on it. (For some reason I'm unable to currently put pictures onto discs).

It's my 36th birthday next month (gulp) and I've been going through a 'little' panic about it and the fact that I don't know any single female expats in their mid-30s and that things will just get worse with regard to this. BUT I'm starting to calm down and rationalise it all a bit more.

On the subject of birthdays and music: if anyone is stuck for inspiration for a present for me (well, I can hope....) I'm after music. Any music. I want new music. Feel free to copy some favourites onto a disc for me! (No d&b please!)

Oh and one other teensy weensy little thing: I've had 50ish responses to a classified girl seeks boy ad I was 'persuaded' to place. Whether I'll respond to any I've not decided. Some look pretty interesting though!

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Er, Sorry?

Excuses excuses excuses new friends old friends bikes hanami apples osaka kyoto himeji cameras karaoke pot luck lunch drinking lurve

Hi! Anyone still reading my blog? I need a catch up but there's so much I want to say that I'm going to have to abbreviate it all. Sorry!!! And there ARE photos but I'm having a few computer problems so they may take a little longer to sort out. It'll be worth the wait though! (Of course!)

Firstly, I have to share the exciting news that I've moved into the 21st century and bought myself an extremely cute iPod Shuffle. In pink. Bright pink. I haven't actually put any music onto it yet. But it IS really cute. I keep looking at it and thinking about putting music onto.

Did I ever mention I got my first CD player about a decade after everyone else? Well, that's me.

Anyway. Things.

Only in Japan - I went to the supermarket the other week. As I was about to go in it started raining. By the time I'd come out, all the bike seats had had plastic bags shoved over them by supermarket staff so they wouldn't get wet. Sweet, huh? I DO love this country sometimes. Oh and I had THREE consecutive days of 'don't park your bike here' notices on my bike last week. Today I paid. I won't continue paying though.

So, let's catch up. Briefly:

1. Lesson Learned.

So, I learned the hard way, again, that I really should go with my gut instinct. The 'friend' whose visit I'd been so looking forward didn't exactly prove to be the experience I'd expected. So, I'd like to share some advice with you ex-pats out there:

1. always get clarification BEFORE a visit whether you are the REASON for the visitors trip or whether you are a distraction DURING the trip. This is particularly important if you intend to take time off work, arrange fun things, arrange for friends to amuse your visitor during their trip.

2. always get clarification (maybe in writing?) of whether friend has any obsess- er, I mean hobbies that will take over your trip and leave you wandering around by yourself.

3. if someone spends 10 years blowing you out; stop making excuses for them and accept things for what they are. OVER.

Anyway, enough, enough.

2. Trips away.

Osaka, Kyoto and Himeji:

Beautiful, beautiful, beautiful. Could have been a REALLY good trip but see point 1 above. Anyway (and photos WILL follow) we spent two days in Kyoto, one day in Osaka and a day in Himeji. Plus a whole day travelling there on the joyful [sarcasm] 'seishun juhachi kippu' - a ticket that cost us 4,000 yen each (return) but involved about 8 hours of travel. Slightly less on the way back as we took an overnight train. Oh and a little bit of Shinkansen as I slightly fucked up on connection times. I was VERY excited by this. Friend was decidedly underwhelmed and whingy about it.

We visited Kiyo-Mizu, Chion-in, Daitokuji, Kinkakuji, Gion, Osaka-jo, Dotombori and Himeji Castle. Some of which were noticeably less crowded and more peaceful than others but they were all extremely beautiful (which still does not make it excusable to spend 5 minutes trying to get the 'perfect photo' EVERY time - see point 1.2 above)

Stayed in a nice and uber-cheap hotel too - Saiyo Hotel - with little tatami rooms, a communal (segregated sexes by time) bath and vending machines with One-Cup Sake and beer. Perfect!

Ooo and food was really good on the trip too but more of all when I've sorted out the pictures.

3. Going Away

Another good friend has escaped back to England. That's one thing that's tough about this lifestyle: people leave. I'll miss him, but we had a fun Sayonara Party and he'll be back to visit. Won't you, Mostyn!

4. New Friends

I met the adorable, but lightweight, Nicola. A cute, bubbly and totally nutty Indian/Canadian chick. I mean she had about three drinks with me and spent ALL the next day throwing up and complaining about feeling ill.

Not really! Well, partly. Anyway, we'd planned to go sightseeing on the Sunday morning, week before last. On the Saturday night though I was still so stressed out by 'friends' visit that I was exhausted and really just needed to chill out/sleep in. So we arranged to meet in the afternoon instead. I was told to look out for the bright orange top. She wasn't kidding ;-) and it was like meeting an old friend (a nice one though!). I dragged her off to get booze and nosh from the supermarket before we met a load of my friends, students, etc and went to the lovely Inokashira Park to celebrate the beauty of the cherry blossom. ie to get extremely drunk. Which we did. Nicola took to this strange Japanese custom with great enthusiasm. I was very proud of her. I then introduced her to the wonders of another great Japanese custom. Karaoke with nomihodai (singing with drink-as-much-as-you-can booze). She took to that pretty well too. Adaptable girl!

Monday we'd planned to do some major sightseeing. I'd even suggested we could try to make Tsukuji (fish) market at 8am before hitting Tokyo Tower, Odaiba, an onsen, a boat trip, a shrine....

We crashed about 2 or 3. An hour or so later I was throwing up. We woke up. Groaned. Went back to sleep. Nicola 'visited' the bathroom several times. I got the energy for a shower. Nicola suggested we got food. I suggested another 20 minutes sleeping. A couple of hours (and a few more trips by Nicola to the bathroom) I had an energy spurt and made it to the supermarket to make lunch...

Somehow we managed to get to Shinjuku (we had to get off the train once) to meet up with Boo, TimorousBeastie and Sigsy for a lovely night in an Izakaya. Tim and I first met a couple of years ago and I've known Boo for just over a year and having already got to know Nicola over MSN conversations and emails before meeting her, that just left Sigsy - another lovely person! Very bubbly and funny.

Let one of us know if you fancy joining us for our next pissup. We're going to try and get one going every 6-8 weeks. Try!

5. Miscellaneous:

See, I'm doing my best to stay brief! This weekend we had a lovely pot luck lunch. Ever had one? I've been to lots and they're great fun. Basically, everyone takes along a dish they've (possibly) made and everyone shares. Great food, great company, lots of booze. Good day. And then more drinking in the evening. And my so-called-friends decided it'd be a fun idea to put a 'man wanted' classified out for me as my life is so obviously missing that vital part (they didn't actually tell me when I'd have time to see anyone....). Anyway, have you ever tried arguing with drunken friends? I just figured I'd humour them and then do nothing about it....

But the ad was rejected because of the email address we used. SUCH a shame ;-)

Besides, some of the guys I've had in my life in the past.... it could just be easier staying single. Maybe.

And you know what? There's ALWAYS more stuff I want to blog about - but just can't. Oh well!

P.S. It SNOWED in Tokyo last week. In April. How bizarre. I didn't actually see it but nearly fell off my chair when I heard it on the news and quickly checked it wasn't April 1st!