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!

Monday, March 31, 2008


I mentioned in the previous post about the female only accommodation that is available that eliminates the danger of men...

I had an almost unanimous response to my telling students I'd been to Cambodia. Not 'did you like it?', not 'what was it like?' not 'can I see your photos?' but 'is it dangerous? - every student who commented asked 'is it dangerous?'. Now, maybe it's just me but that is the LAST thing that would come to my mind if someone had been away somewhere. Predictably, the second question was usually 'how was the food?'

On the way to a friends Sayonara Party on Saturday, I was in Shibuya station and there was an old man doddering around after the ticket gates. He could have been drunk, he could have been confused, he could have been ill. Anyway, he staggered onto the up escalator and suddenly fell over, laying there head down, legs up (I'm resisting Kafka'esque comparisons here) - I was quite a distance up and probably couldn't have helped him up by myself anyway, but the people immediately above and below him ignored him for ages before a couple of people decided to help. What really got me though was the number of people above me on the escalator who didn't have the common sense to push the stop button as they got off the escalator so the people COULD help him up.

I pressed it as soon as I could get to it. The old man continued staggering around afterwards.


Everything is very pretty right now with pink explosions on all the trees. It's just such a shame the weather has been so bloody miserable, wet and cold. Not the best hanami weather. More of a kind of hibernating weather really.

Or in my case, househunting weather. I've found a few interesting places. Hopefully, by this time next week I should have secured somewhere but I'm really not too bothered. There is a lot available and a lot coming available all the time, especially guesthouse wise.


I'll try and get my Cambodia holiday written up later today.


It's funny. Life these days: I can barely remember life pre-internet. I mean the days when if you wanted to book a holiday you had to go into a travel agent and when the only information you could really get was from guidebooks or television programmes, if you weren't lucky enough to know someone who had been to the someplace you wanted to go to. Now, I can research the opinions of millions of people, find maps without trudging round shops, order a vegan meal without picking up the phone.....

Househunting is the same. As someone who has lived in thirtysomething odd properties, I consider myself rather familiar with the game of flathunting. And HOW much easier is it when I can find out all the information I need from a few emails and websites, when I can look at photos and check details before going through the time-consuming game of visiting crap property after crap property?

Mail. When did you last write a letter? Or go to a bank for anything other than the ATM?

Life is convenient. And yet we're forever trying to make it more and more so. Funny old world.

I'll talk more about monks later but monks are also moving with the times. Yup, this is what I was told when I asked a monk in Cambodia why he had a mobile phone. Hmmm.


Blogger Sigsy said...

here is my estate agents number - 09036915579. His name is Rob and he is great. He has a number of guesthouses around Tokyo and gives good advice too.
Good luck with the househunt!

9:45 pm

Blogger Elspeth said...

Good luck with the House hunting - I dread moving esp with all the junk umm wonderful things my family have accumalated. And it does seem odd a Monk having a mobile but I guess these days everyone (almost) has one

8:49 am

Blogger The Pixy Princess said...

oooo lots of new stuff on your blog! I've been so unbloggy of late. terrible.
re the "bursts of pink and white"... aah, was a whole year ago that I was there! SUCH good memories!

6:13 am

Blogger Jo said...

thanks sigs, but i finally got so overwhelmed by the number of phone numbers people were throwing at me and the number of positive email responses i was getting on emails asking about availability that i decided on somewhere without hunting too much more.

i'm paying the deposit today on a place in shinjuku. fingers crossed it's going to be as nice as the photos as i can't visit it before moving in! it seems a pretty good deal though and i'll expect visitors as the location is so convenient;-)

even without seeing it my gut says this is the right choice. we'll see...

elspeth - they 'even' wear flipflops these days! i think part of the monk 'development' thing is that for so many of them - the novices anyway - they KNOW it's only a temporary 'phase' - maybe ten or so years, maybe more, and so they're prepared to allow themselves more freedom.

i remember last year in lao when a monk told me they can't eat after midday, but they drink lots of ovaltine.

or seeing monks using internet cafes or riding on motorbikes...

pixy - why are you unhappy, sweetheart? your visit here was fun. you're a great person to hang out with. even if you can't hold your drink!!!! and last year, when you were here, was a LOT warmer than it is this year.

i've been a hanami wuss this year and have been refusing to sit in a park. it's just too bloody cold. i've been enjoying it from the streets instead, although i may go today and peek in a park with jen!

10:13 am

Blogger Jo said...

pixy - lol! i 'will' learn to read. i just saw you wrote 'unbloggy'. i read 'unhappy'. doh, me.

unbloggy is okay. unhappy isn't!

10:14 am

Blogger The Pixy Princess said...

no no... not unhappy at all. I have way too many good friends and family and books and a nice bed... to be unhappy!

And I can too hold my drink. I just had never experienced that aweful combination of alcohol that included plum wine, champagne, saki, sochu AND copious amounts of beer!!!

In fact, am getting ready for our annual 12 hour pub crawl at the end of the month!

1:29 am

Blogger Jo said...

excuses, pixy!

9:21 am


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