Lying on Jeff’s tatami mat (lower back is sore…)

Jeff was gracious enough to provide accomodations. Have to leave soon. Going to meet Hana (she stayed at our house in Canada a few years ago) in Shinjuku.


I just got out of the shower (at Hana’s house!!)

This is a big surprise: I’m sitting in a room that Hana’s family has prepared for me! There’s even a TV and a Super-Famicom (Super Nintendo) and a Playstation! It’s a traditional Japanese room with sliding paper doors and really nice tatami mats! SUGOI! When I went to meet Hana, I had no idea that she had planned for me to stay a week at her house! I thought I would be back in Jeff’s dormitory with Alex eating konbini food… which would not be bad, but this is really cool! Already, I’ve learned so much Japanese. My Japanese level, which is VERY low, will probably double just because of my stay here! I’m so excited! =) Thank you, so much, Hana and Hana’s hospitable family! ^_^ The only bad things I can possibly think of would be that I can’t seem to connect on my wireless Internet, and that I don’t have any worthy omiyage for Hana’s family. =( I will have to “order” something from Canada. =)

I actually met Hana in Meidaimae. Sadly, this marked the first time I took the train by myself, in Japan – but I made it! I’m so proud! Actually, I was early, because Jeff and Alex were meeting Sound, John, and Larry (I think) later that day, so I had to leave with them, of course. I took a long walk around Meidaimae, sneaking into air-conditioned stores whenever possible, and met Hana a little later. I would not have been able to do it if I did not have this super-cool Japanese cell-phone with VERY USEFUL email support! *phew* I love my ketai denwa. =) Hana showed me where she goes to school, Meiji University, but we were not able to go inside. 🙁

8:15am – the next day (I fell asleep) ^_^

From Meidaimae, Hana and I went to Shinjuku.

She took me to a famous ramen restaurant, where we must have stood in line for 45 minutes! But the ramen was the best ramen I’ve ever had! SO GOOD! Unfortunately, it was a very hot day, and I was sweating badly, especially eating a hot bowl of ramen. =) After that, we went to Shibuya, I believe, and walked around some “popular” places where I got to see SO MANY crazy fashions! Many girls dressed up like dolls. I really wanted to take pictures. I will ask, next time. We walked around a lot, and were pretty tired, so we decided to find the closest cafe and sit down to have a drink. At this cafe, which had a really cool fountain in the middle, I had the 2nd most expensive drink I’ve ever had. 500 yen Orange juice. Yep, about $6 CDN for a large glass of OJ (filled half w/ice). But, it was the best glass of OJ I’ve ever had! I think they used 3 real oranges. I saw them make it – they rolled the oranges into some kind of juicer. It was so good! I even had a seed in my drink! heheh ^_^
So we sat at this cafe for a long time, trying to decide what to do. You see, I did not know I was going to be staying at Hana’s that night, so I did not bring all my stuff. It was at Jeff’s. I had to wait for Jeff (who doesn’t have a cell phone) to tell me when he was going back so as I could grab my bags. We decided we would go to a “game centre” to kill some time; after all, I saw F-Zero GX when walking earlier. =) But we must have really liked that cafe, because we went back again! (Hana forgot her hat ^^).

Earlier, I had given Hana some cookies I bought while waiting for her, and she put them in her bag. They ended up falling out of their package and making a mess of her bag! Gomen!

I got an email from Shirley saying Jeff had already left, so then Hana and I changed our destinations, and I immediately left for the dormitory. I would meet Hana and her mother at Shinjuku, later (once again, taking trains all by myself – scary, but necessary). A few non-interesting events followed: I went back to dormitory; I packed; I left; I met Hana and her mother and appologized for making them wait; we road trains together for maybe an hour, and Hana’s father picked us up at a train station, and drove us to their home. Hana’s family does not speak any English, so I will have to try to speak a little Japanese! Cool! =)

Thank you, once again, to Hana and her nice family for taking me into their home. This Obon holiday is going to be great!

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