Sunday, January 29, 2006

Crossing animals.

I haven't played my DS since I left home. And only because I'm bitter about the WiFi here @ the hotel. Its free, but won't work with the DS because you have to click a button on a web form to activate it. Free internet that has to be activated pisses me off. Places like Panera do it too. Fuck, even if you pay for WiFi @ Starbucks, you have to submit a web form before you can get online. In addition to meaning this won't work for the DS, it won't work for any WiFi enabled device that doesn't have a built in browser. IE Skype phones, etc...

Well, I digress. I've busted out the DS & started playing, again. All the aminals were pissed that I'd been gone an entire month. It took me damn near 45 minutes to clear all the weeds.

But the entire reason I started writing about this is: I think I've found a bug in AC:WW. I noticed this a LONG time ago, but I just got around to bitching about it. When you fish in the river, the bobber moves down stream, just like AC. However, when you fish in the ocean, the bobber still moves down. Exactly opposite the expected behavior. They got this right in AC for GC. How'd it escape detection this time?

Wednesday, January 25, 2006

All Caught Up

With the power vested in me by Ecto, I've caught up on my blogging.

And the peasants rejoice!

This week I didn't really do anything. Which is good, because it means I didn't spend much money. And that's whats important. Staying not broke. I talked to Sharon quite a bit on Tuesday. It was nice. She seems to be holding down the fort quite well. I knew she could handle it. She's been trying to keep herself busy. I know the feeling.

After watching the miniseries of BG, I was pretty into the show. Now, after watching almost the entire first season, I've gotta say I think they are overdoing the religion thing quite a bit. I'm not sure I wanna continue watching. I mean... It is interesting, but for a couple episodes, I felt like I was listening to a church sermon. Not exactly what I want to pay 2$ an episode for, if you know what I mean. What kept me going was the fact that it didn't entirely kill the story. Every episode can't be great. *shrug* And I am pretty interested in the characters. Even if they're an unlikely bunch. I guess that might be what makes it good.

Now, if you'll excuse me, I gotta get ready for work.

Sunday, January 22, 2006

Bleh

I wound up not going snowboarding today, Sharon & I decided that it probably wasn't the best idea, financially. And I felt like crap yesterday. I only left my room to get something to eat. Same for today. Just gunna take it easy. I downloaded the entire first season of Monk, and the miniseries & first season of BattleStar Galactica. That should keep me busy for a while.

Friday, January 20, 2006

Half way day

Well, today is the 1/2 way point in my trip. 2 weeks down, 2 weeks to go.

I can't believe how much I miss Sharon. I'm sure there are several people here who wish I'd just shut up about her. Myself included. I'm getting self conscious, so its gotta be bad. Not that I don't like talking about her, but that I'm starting to worry that I do it too much. I guess she isn't the only one who's attached. It would be better if we could talk more. But with the time difference, and my unreliable headset its hard to get together.

*sigh*

I think she'd like it here. Maybe, one of these days, I can come back to do man on site here again, and bring her with me.

Snowboarding

I finished Rich Dad, Poor Dad, and I feel... Enlightened. Its great. I'm starting to think about some of the things he says, and about how I can apply them to mine & Sharon's finances to get us out of the rat race. Now'd be the best time to do it, too. We've actually started saving, and are on top of our bills for the first time since September 2004. It feels kinda nice.

The guys are thinking about going snowboarding Sunday. I work the night shift Saturday, so I'm sure I'll be beat, but I'd still like to go. I just gotta talk it over with Sharon. We can afford it, but I dunno if we *should* do it. I talked to Dai, and he says it will run me about $200 to rent all the stuff I need. Bummer!

Rich Dad, Poor Dad

I picked up Rich Dad, Poor Dad this morning, and read a couple of chapters before I went to bed. I've already learned a lot. I can't believe that I haven't read anything by this guy yet. A lot of it makes sense, and its caused a lot of self reflection. I can't wait to finish it.

Thursday, January 19, 2006

Blink

Yesterday I started and finished one of the four books that I bought this week. Its called Blink, and its about the split second decisions that our subconscious makes, and how to realize them, and how to interpret them.

It was a very interesting read, and I'll probably be reading it again soon, to take notes.

Wednesday, January 18, 2006

Pictures

I went back to Hiroshima today, went shopping, again. Bought that cologne that I'd looked at yesterday. I decided that Shay'll probably like it too. Had lunch at a Thai place, it was pretty good. Discovered that I can't stand eggplant. James and I went to the Art Museum, and to Hiroshima Castle. I took a bunch of pics, and even uploaded some of them. After Meuki (sp?) got off of work, she joined us for dinner at an all you can eat/drink place. For $30 you get 90 minutes to gorge yourself. Once again, I caught the last train.

I forgot that I'd repaid Shibata-San, so I had 10k yen less than I thought, and had to wait at the station, and pay more, for a cab that accepted credit cards. D'oh!

One of the things I dislike about having a better camera, is that it makes the bad pics that much worse! I'm seriously thinking about taking some amateur photography lessons when I get home.

Tuesday, January 17, 2006

New Camera!

I went by the electronics store near James' hotel to look at getting a new SD card. On my way to check out, I passed by their digital cameras. Below the Nikon D50 (the camera that I've been thinking about buying since a few days before I left) was an Olympus E300, on sale for about $550. I played around with the demo unit, and asked the sales guy how long the price was good for. He said they only had one left. So I bought it. With a 1gig CF card, a USB card reader, and tax I was out the door for just over $700.

Its an awesome camera. 8 mega pixel digital SLR with a 14-55mm digital lens. I charged the battery up for a bit, and then took a few pictures with it tonight. I'll upload them to my flickr account soon.

Other than that, not much happened today. Went out to eat. Bought Sharon a present, looked at some cologne for myself. I'm still not sure what I want to get everyone else. At this point, I don't even know who I need to get stuff for. I'd like to get something small for my parents & siblings. Like I just said, I already got Sharon something. I also think it'd be nice to get some stuff for a few of our friends back home, but everything is so expensive! Oh, and I bought a few books and a magazine today. Gotta have something to do during the downtime at work.

I tried to recover the pics on the miniSD card, but when I put it in the card reader, it crashed my computer. I tried formatting the card, as a last resort, but that failed as well.

I'm pissed. We've had this card less than a year. I guess this trip just isn't so great for electronics. My BT headset died. It's been hangin in there for a month or so now, but its totally crapped out on me. I don't think it'll ever work again. Another $80 down the tube. I just can't believe that it didn't even last 4 months. Too bad its passed the 90 day return policy @ radio shack. I've gotten really spoiled having it. So spoiled, that I'm thinking about buying another one when I get back to the states.

Monday, January 16, 2006

D-R-U-N-K

I slept all day yesterday. I thought I'd go out to eat with the local guys, have a few drinks... Next thing I new it was like 5am, and I was drunk off my ass. I woke up at noon with a killer headache. I took several Excedrin, and barfed a few times. I was supposed to be up early to go hang out with James downtown, but I feel like shit. Its been almost 90 minutes since I got sick, so I'm gunna take a shower and give James a call.

Oh, and something's up with my camera. I took a few pictures last night, and all of a sudden the cam starts saying "Memory Card Error". So I've got to try to get a new SD card.

Friday, January 13, 2006

Downtime

It's been forever since I've posted.

Not that I haven't thought about it, but that I haven't taken the time. More like when I have the time, I've been doing other things.

I'm in Japan on business, and have been going like 100 miles an hour since a few days before I left. I've got a lot to post about, but can't seem to make the time. Expect a slew of new posts here in the next couple of days. I'll be working a lot, which means that I won't have time to go out & play much.

Oh, and I've set Skype to forward calls to my new cell. Incoming calls are free, so it doesn't cost me anything on the cell end. It only costs a few cents a minute on the Skype side, so I'm not complaining. The thing is, if you call, you gotta let it ring a bunch. As in don't hang up unless you get my voice mail. As a matter of fact, if you get my voice mail, and don't leave a message, I'll fling boogers at you.

Wednesday, January 11, 2006

Downtown Hiroshima, pt 2

Last night--erh, Tuesday night--James, his girlfriend and I went out to dinner & Drinks. I crashed at his hotel, and then we spent the rest of yesterday shopping.

There is a LOT to do downtown, and I'm still not very sure of my way around, but I'm working on it.

We spent pretty much all day at this mall called Parko, and walking around Honduri street. It's a covered street with shops lining either side.

I didn't buy much. Thankfully none of the clothes I liked fit, because everything I tried on was over $100. Even shirts. How can people afford to dress around here? I did get a prepaid cell phone. I'd tried getting one on my first day in town, but the lady told me I needed a resident alien card. James & I went to a different store, and he was able to explain to the girl there that I was only in Japan for the month. Whatever he said, it worked, and about $100 later I was the proud owner of a bright yellow Vodafone.

Tonight, we went out again, and I barely made the last train back. Its a good thing I don't have to be at work until 9pm tonight!

Monday, January 09, 2006

Downtown Hiroshima

Last night didn't work out. I slept so late that there was no way I could take a train there, and have time to eat and catch the train back. So I just took it easy & read that copy of the Wall St. Journal that I got on the plane. No news like old news...

I'm gunna swing by the bank, and then head downtown.

Sunday, January 08, 2006

Exhausted

I just got back from work, and man, am I beat.

The local FSEs think nothing of working a 14hr shift. In fact, thats the norm. They don't work anything less. All I've done since I've been here is sleep, eat, & work. Kinda like usual on the weekend. Hopefully I'll recover enough today to go out to eat with James tonight.

I woke up early on Saturday afternoon (early since I had to be at work at 8pm), and took a short walk. There doesn't seem to be much around here. A couple of restaurants, several car dealerships. There is a rather large electronics store, Deodeo. But not much else. I think the people at the front desk tried to tell me where the bank was, which is good, seeing as they don't cash traveler's checks here. But its a holiday weekend, so they'll be closed until Tuesday! Shibata-San loaned me 10k yen (about 100$) so I should be good until then, but I was pretty freaked out being in a foreign country with no access to money.

I've had a chance to check out a couple of the restaurants near the hotel, not too bad. As a matter of fact, I've eaten only Japanese food since I've been here. I will say that I can stand most of it, and even like some of it, but wouldn't say its my favorite. They like things cold and/or raw, and bland. I like things cooked, hot, and spicy.

Hopefully they're done cleaning my room now, so I can get some rest.

Friday, January 06, 2006

Checked in

Well, I've finally arrived in Japan. I checked into my hotel about an hour ago. Its nice. Small, but nice. Everything is crazy clean. I'm beat from the trip, but I've got the night shift tomorrow. Figures. If I go to sleep now, I doubt I'll be able to sleep before work. But there is no way I'll be awake for long.

There's only one word to describe the trip. Long. I left my house at 7am, and it was just after 8 am Eastern Time when I checked in to the hotel.

The flight from Logan to O'Hare was late arriving. The Chicago-Tokyo flight was overbooked, so I was lucky getting on the second (and last) flight out of Chicago. Then the flight was delayed leaving....

I made it to Tokyo with enough time to run to the other terminal to catch my last flight to Hiroshima. By the time I got to Hiroshima, I had to walk a few blocks to the airport hotel to cash a traveler's check so I'd have enough cash for the taxi.

I took a few pics on the way, mostly out of sheer boredom, but you can still check them out on my flickr page. I created a set just for the trip, and I'll be adding photos to there as I take them.

Well, I've already talked to Sharon, so I guess that's it. I'm goin to bed.

Peace!