WEEK 4

It's funny how doing something as mundane as going to the post office here feels like a major achievement.

This week we had to do a lot of usually mundane stuff. Like getting money from the ATM and picking up our Japanese bank cards... and signing up for wireless internet. The reason all of this was so exciting was because we didn't know where to go for any of these things, but we somehow managed to find them.

We will have internet from home in a couple of weeks!

Emryn sent over two Australian Idol tapes and some magazines. Thanks Em! The only thing is, it seems as if the VCRs here are a different format, so the tapes won't play properly. If anyone knows how to get a PAL format tape to play on an NTSC VCR, let me know! In the meantime, no one is allowed to tell me what's happened on the show!

This weekend was great. We went to a part of Kyoto called Otsu, which reminds me a bit of an Asian Lismore. It's set at the foot of the mountains and on a huge lake that looks like the ocean. It was raining when we got there so we mostly admired the view from our hotel room on the 34th floor. The hotel was beautiful, but very expensive. In the evening we went to the top floor bar and drank Tequila Sunrises and ate deep fried cheese.

We also went to our first Japanese sushi train. They're pretty high-tech here, with touch screens and a slot to drop your plates into. Each table also has a hot tap to fill up your tea with.

On Sunday, we stopped at a temple and gardens at a place called Higashi-Yama. The gardens were really pretty so we sat and ate roasted chestnuts. There was also a huge cemetery there. Japanese headstones are quite different to ours and made out of polished marble. We went back to the temple just as a ceremony was starting, so we stayed for a while but it was a bit boring. It seemed to be a church service, but because it was in Japanese, we didn't know what they were saying. The choir was good though!

Random Observation

It is rude to eat or drink while walking.