Japanese Driving School: 入学式

After my initial escapades searching and enrolling at the Driving School, I was able to take the Entrance Ceremony, known as 入学式 (nyugakushiki) in Japanese! Schools in Japan are big on entrance ceremonies, and although it wasn’t quite the grand fanfare I’m used to witnessing at my High School, it was informative and quite the ride! Here’s how it went down.. (I’ll tl;dr at the end for anyone skimming!)

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Learning to Drive .. in Japan!

Ufufuf.. hey everyone! It has been a while.. let me share some exciting news!

I decided to learn how to drive .. in Japan! That’s right – I have enrolled in a Japanese driving school, to take lessons and eventually take the test so I can have a full Japanese license. I don’t even own one in my home country, but after 2 years here and being fed up of relying on others to get me around, I thought it was worth taking the challenge and not letting the language barrier put me off.

I’m going to share my experiences of the process and my progress in the hopes that it might be informative for anyone who is interested in taking lessons here too!

A bit of background for my language – I am currently not JLPT certified. I actually failed the N4 in July, by 1 point, haha. But I am decent conversationally, especially if spoken to slowly. I’ve lived here for 2 years, and recently started learning some driving and vehicle related vocab prior to enrolling to help prepare a little.

So – don’t be put off if you aren’t a very high level. I’ll cover some of the language stuff another time.

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Music Mondays: Matsuri Edition

Yesterday, me and my neighbours were invited to perform at our local community center as part of a matsuri! We were asked to sing, and we performed a short dance where we made a mash-up of popular dances from the West with current dance trends in Japan. That was really good fun and a big success. So today, I’ll share the two Japanese songs that were performed as part of our set!

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Changing seasons, busy months..

Hello everyone!

Gosh it has been a while since I posted anything.. for that I am sorry!

The past month has been a combination of extremely busy times, a little soul searching and a sudden full-blown gut-punch of exhaustion. I’m not entirely sure if it is due to the sudden change in the weather (it dropped down to being pretty cold suddenly and we had a very short Autumn this year!) or just the general increase of my work load this year. But either way I am happy, healthy and chugging along merrily, albeit tiredly.

I’ll summarize briefly, and I’ll post up some of the more interesting things which deserve their own posts later on:

  • I took the JLPT N4 on Sunday 4th December (and I don’t feel terrible about it!)
  • Me and two friends are still in the midst of planning and creating our own video game. Let’s just say that is going slowly but it’s pretty solid! The awesome writer of the project has started tinkering with some ideas which in turn inspired me to start storyboarding.
  • I’ve began to think about my post-JET career, but that is still a way away..
  • We’ve also been binge-playing TellTale Games The Walking Dead.. FINALLY! We’re on the second play-through now, awaiting my order of S2 to arrive and S3 to be released this month (eeeeeeeeeeeeeee)
  • I’ve been drawing many other things on and off. Some of which will be posted soon.
  • Work is going swimmingly! We’ve had lots of fun projects going on but this term has been much busier, plus I have been involved in other school’s events.
  • All of my technology seems to be failing around me. My phone and laptop both have strange issues, and my video camera broke mid-project… boo.
  • I’ve visited some interesting places which will definitely have reviews coming up on here soon!
  • I’ve been brought in on a couple of drawing related things for a friend and for my school which will both keep me busy for a while.

Mm so yes, that is pretty much all for this moment. Just checking in to prompt myself to post again and basically revive the temporarily sleeping blog here.

Oh, and also.. our new favourite saying is “stay frosty”, as per Lee in TWD. So kids,

Stay frosty!

LINE FRIENDS X Harajuku!

On Saturday, I flew over to Tokyo as it was a long weekend and I figured it’s time to finally visit the LINE Friends store in Harajuku!

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LINE is a messenger application which is hugely popular in Asia, and growing in popularity across the world. It’s available in a number of languages and is popular as you can send messages, make voice calls, share images and more for free using mobile data or WiFi. A somewhat cuter Whatsapp, let’s say.

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Getting Crafty – Making accessories

Recently I discovered the joy of buying craft materials in Japan! I feel like lately, I have spent way too much money in these shops, I can’t really complain.. The quality and selection of the stuff you can buy in these shops is waaay superior to some of the stuff back home.. and I guess I can justify it, as it has been a little too cold to go out and do much lately!

So.. here is a little peek at the selection of what I bought in my last visit..

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Cat Day!

How on earth did I miss yesterday being “Cat Day” in Japan?

22/2, affectionately known as 猫の日 was chosen because the day is ににに – the closest sound to what a cat makes.. just as adorable as I expected from Japan.

Read about CAT DAY here!

I celebrated without even realising, because I was using my Nekomimi headphones. How did you celebrate?