Log in

No account? Create an account
09 October 2016 @ 09:58 pm
[sticky post]  


I disabled comments after getting some...interesting? comments. Go ahead and message me or just send me a request and I will check you out :)

I will keep entries public for 10 days, each (Or every two weeks if I am suddenly swamped!). Then they will be locked. This allows people to get a taste of what I'm like while still giving me a sense of privacy.

Thanks for understanding!


Another weekend morning with a pot of tea -- this time, heavily concentrated green tea in hopes of weakening this cold. I'm exhausted and want to sleep, but can't close my eyes for more than 2 minutes without having to blow my nose or wipe my eyes. Ryu is still sleeping, having gotten home at 1am from a wedding party, so I thought it would be best to battle my symptoms in another room. I've currently gone through half a full-sized box of tissues I opened just this morning, and my nose is raw....

First time eating Russian Foods, and thinking about Foreign Languages
I might have pushed myself too hard yesterday, having gone out after work with my friend L to a Russian restaurant in Omiya. I'd been feeling relatively crappy after work as it was, but knew that if I canceled, I wouldn't be able to see L until next year, so I roughed it. While I may feel like death this morning, I have no regrets over going out yesterday. The food was delicious and I definitely plan on going again. L and I were so busy in conversation that I forgot to take pictures of the food, but I had a delicious vegetable type broth and an amazing potato-salad. It was interesting to me how a lot of the food seemed to have a similar taste and concept to food back home. It didn't feel as much like I was eating Russian food, but more like I was eating PR food that simply hadn't been made right. Nostalgic but different at the same time. I'm providing a link to the restaurant review page (In English and set to open in a new window).

When we entered the owner had been hesitant at first, giving us a shy "Irrashaimase" until L spoke to her in Russian. The woman confessed that she had thought L was Russian but had hesitated because some time before, she had assumed a woman was Russian and greeted her in the language, only to learn the woman was polish and a bit annoyed with being confused as Russian. L told her that I wasn't Russian but that she was, and I told the woman she was more than welcomed to use Russian with L, that I don't really care.

While on the topic of foreign languages, a few days ago, I was stopped by a fellow foreigner asking me for directions. She asked in broken Japanese where a particular shopping center was, and because her Japanese had been broken, I thought to answer in English -- but she didn't speak English! So I tried in Japanese and she understood that just fine. In the end, however, I learned that she was Spanish and that while my Latin American Spanish was different from her "Original Spanish," we could have just been able to use that from the beginning. She confessed that she had stopped me because I looked like a Spanish-Speaker, but had been confused when I had immediately turned and aswered "Hai?" to her "Excuse me," and thought it was possible I was a half-child.
We had a good laugh about it before parting ways. It reminded me of a time a few years ago in Shibuya, when a woman from somewhere in Europe randomly grabbed my arm and started talking to me in a language I couldn't understand. She literally pulled me in to the station ticket-machine, and was pointing at this and that but I couldn't understand what she wanted. So I started tossing out in English, Spanish, Japanese, French and the little Italian I knew, that "I don't understand." One of the languages clicked, because she let me go and wandered off to find another. If only she had approached with the calm of this woman from a few days ago!
I rarely buy magazines, at most maybe twice a year. This summer I purchased a magazine for it's articles on digestion, because I have major digestion issues. And now, I've purchased a winter magazine for it's winter care articles because I am horrible at self-care in cold weather, and for it's make up samples. I had been eyeing a few new lipsticks because I'm tired of bright reds, and the magazine happened to include samples of two nice shades and color palettes.
Last, my outfit of the day, my "ootd," I guess it's called, for yesterday. I saw this on someone elses journal and thought it was a nice idea, especially since I'm currently in the process of changing my fashion to better suit my body style (I struggle with small waist big bust syndrome!) I've accepted that no matter how much weight I lose, the girls just aren't going to go away. Even after a 40-some kilo weight loss, no change. So it's time to adapt my fashion to that! Sadly, the fashion I DO like just doesn't look too great with a bust, and the fashion that supposedly works well, makes me look like I'm forever going to a club.  A lot of people in my family are quite busty and some have even had reduction done because doctors insisted it was necessary for their backs. I don't want to go that route though. It's a mixed bag. I've been told that I don't need the surgery if I just lose more weight, while simultaneously being told I can't lose more weight because my bones protrude enough as it is in my mid-section. Some people have said I should gain some more weight so that my bust simply didn't look as big in comparison, but I worked so hard to get to this point now....

I'll probably only be doing OOTD only once a week, since I wear more-or-less the same thing Mondays through Fridays. That suit life!
02 December 2018 @ 12:12 pm

Yesterday evening was rather tension filled, even though there wasn't exactly an issue between Ryu and me where one of us did something to anger the other. It was just an unfortunate situation. I don't get stressed easily, but one thing that does stress me out is racism. Racism in itself is exhausting, but even more-so when you don't have anyone to vent to, which I don't. Of the two foreign friends I have, one has her company do everything for her so she doesn't have to deal with anything. The other is fair skinned, light haired and light eyed, so she gets treated like a tourist most of the time (Although recently she dyed her hair darker and is starting to realize a difference...). The last person leaves Ryu..... but he doesn't really comprehend what I am complaining about because he's never experienced racism, and was raised with the idea that Japanese people just don't do rude things.  The fact that I am foreign and different is undeniable, but he doesn't treat me any differently than he would another Japanese person. So, he struggles sometimes with the fact that not everyone is as open towards foreigners and that rules for us are slightly different and that we won't always be treated with the same respect.

I came home almost in tears after dealing with a cellphone issue. The tears were more from frustration at biting my tongue more than it was hurt...but yeah. I was angry to high-heaven.
Me: My bill has been going up and I don't understand why. I can't open my mobile banking, so I was wondering if you could help me access it or look up my account.
Them: You still have to pay.
Me: Yeah, it's already paid off. Here's the slip. I just want to know why it's up and what I can do for the future to make it cheaper.
Him: Maybe its conversion rate from Japan to foreign card. You have to watch exchange rate.
Me: It's connected to my bank account here in Japan. There should be no exchange rate. Japanese bank account. Yen to yen.
Him; Maybe confusion in your foreign bank account and Japanese one?
Me: I don't have a foreign bank account. Just Japan. So, I'd like to try and see my billing....
Them; You have to open it on your mobile banking to see.
Me: Right. But I'm having trouble accessing the account, so I was wondering if you could help.
Them: I guess the Japanese can be difficult. There is an English option.
Me: I'm aware. I actually understand the Japanese just fine. But it won't let me in with my supposed access code that I was given last time.They said use this code to open it and change it to a code I can remember, but I never did it, so it should be this same code....
Them: You might have forgotten it or put it in properly. Many people seem to.
Me: Yeah...well, I have it here with me, the phone AND the paper with the code written by another store-clerk from here and if you could try... my boyfriend couldn't either.
Them: Is he Japanese?
Me: Does it matter?
Them: ........ *Puts in the code. Fails to work* Did you change any settings?
Me: I don't know how to change anything because I can't get in to the billing account.... It only lets me in to the general area to track data and such...
Them: You should take it to the store in which you purchased this mobile. It could be a problem with the phone. They can also open your account for you.
Me: I purchased it here. ACTUALLY, I purchased it from YOU. And YOU opened my account on this PC when I purchased it from you because you were trying to get me to add an ipad plan because you were selling them cheaply that month......
Them: Maybe you are confusing me with someone else....

And as soon as I took out his business card which he had given to Ryu last time, when we originally bought my mobile, it went downhill and he got downright nasty in the most indirect ways possible. At one point he went as far to suggest that it could be me trying to get out of an expensive fee from calling my home country every day, and not knowing it was going to be so expensive. Which I don't, btw. I call from my home PC, on LINE, which is free. So I left without finding out why my phonebill has increased over 5,000yen/50$ish.

When I explained everything that had happened to him, he sat there in shock and irritation and said we'd go again together. "No. I'm tired. Racism wears me out. I just want to grab dinner, come back, then go to bed" I told him. On our way to dinner, we talked about it. He pointed out that anytime we'd gone to the shop together, he'd never seen them be rude or racist to me. I pointed out that every time we'd gone together, they never said a word to me and wouldn't even look at me or acknowledge anything I said -- that I'd have to tell Ryu and when he repeated it, then they'd answer.( I wrote about this before, actually. How the man had even asked Ryu what HE wanted as a customer gift, even though I was the customer and Ryu was contracted to another company..) He admitted he had noticed but hadn't thought it was an issue at the time. The Japanese have a very different idea of racism. When you say racism, they picture all the violence and such going on in America. Not the subliminal treatments and comments they make without thinking. I've literally had people tell me if I've gotten offended at something that no, they are not racist, but that I just don't understand the culture.

And then I told him about things that happen when I go alone.  "And that's why you'd always ask me to drive you to another shop or to come with you....." he said slowly, piecing things together. When I nodded, he got quiet and remained quiet until this morning when he woke up with an insane pain in his neck, and we talked about things as I tried to massage the knotted muscle. He's trying to understand, he really is. I can see the internal struggle written all over his face. I don't expect him to suddenly become a warrior for equality and all that but I need him to open his eyes to the fact that it's not always going to be the same for me as it is for him.

Mental recovery involved two bowls of ice cream and the online purchase of a dress.

We're going to Ryu's house today to pick up shoes for a wedding, and some bags of rice his mom brought us from Iwate, then grocery shopping. Maybe before we go, I can get in some blush practice (It's my goal to learn how to wear blush! Tutorials for combination skin?) and some yoga.

25 November 2018 @ 09:52 am
New glasses. Documenting here to have it on record. When I lost my glasses the first time, they asked me about brand and all that, but I didn't know (who remembers the name of generic brands?), and I had told them that my prescription was extremely specific, so I'd just need to see and I could pick them out immediately from glasses they had collected. They asked me for "evidence" of my glasses and that maybe they'd know the brand to "help me." But I didn't have any, as I'd never snap photos with glasses on -- they basically said tough luck. So. Preventative measures. Me and Glasses. The 違和感 is insane. My dictionary defines that as "a sense of discomfort." But I don't feel any particular discomfort. It's like going from a black and white TV to a full color HD TV. it feels over-whelming yet amazing at the same time. My vision is even and bright, but I've not yet adjusted to the change in spacing and distance. Hopefully soon.

After picking up my glasses and Ryu's suit for a wedding next month, we went for a bite to eat and then to try and book our vacation with Japan Railways. Mid-conversation with the agent, something felt off, so we decided to book on our own directly with the hotel. Unfortunately, they didn't have any "rooms with a view" left, but offered us an 1万円 ($100ish?) and all-you-can-eat meal discount on our booking. When combined with train tickets, this brings us to 2万円 ($200?) each compared to the 2万8千円 and dinner meal plan we would have gotten with Japan Railways. I wonder what it means to have a room without a view. She said it meant the room didn't have a breath-taking scene. Just a regular scene. But what's that? In any case, we aren't going to be in our room much anyway. We intend on basically living in the hot tubs and massage parlors and doing the tourist thing and stuffing our faces.

Edit: We found out a bit ago when confirming our arrival time that a "normal view" means it faces the city as opposed to facing the ocean or the mountain range. Meh.

December 22-23: 鬼怒川ホテル三日月! Then back home on Christmas eve to relax some more and prepare for work the next day.

I had time to meet with my friend L in Akabane for sweet bread and milk tea. We ended up talking for four horus about this and that. We're both really irritated with work these days, it seems. She'd gone to America on a business trip and brought me back some Peppridge Farm cookies. They are too sweet for Ryu, so I get to enjoy them alone. I'll make sure to get her something in Kinugawa as well. These days I don't really go anywhere, but every time she goes on a business trip, she brings me omiyage.

On the diet front, I finally completed one of my goals! I reached the end of my belt! While I don't know how many kilos I weigh, I know I've lost inches, at least. My next goal is to get to the middle loop of my new belt.

Another morning, another cup of tea. This time, I'm enjoying some Citrus-Ginger Chai tea I was gifted for my birthday. I don't usually enjoy hot citrus teas, but it's well welcomed on my recovering stomach after having battled against an over-sized bowl of vegetable ramen last night. I made it through all the vegetables, all the meat, and 1/4 of the actual noodles.  What a curse it is having this ramen shop literally only a 2 minute's walk away. At least I have a weeks worth of dietary goods a coworker gave me. That should help me balance out this week before my weigh in on the 23rd. I dropped a knotch in my belt so I'm not 100% worried, but....

(丸源ラーメン・野菜ラーメン 790円)

I was given some post cards at work by a client, that I've decided to send to my family, I've been wracking my brain over what to send my family, but I'm out of ideas. For years I've sent touristy items and beauty items for my mother. But I don't want to keep adding to clutter if their plan is to de-clutter and move homes when my dog finally passes (Hopefully not any time soon, mind you! But they currently rent a home that allows dogs and haven't been able to find anything better that allows pets, so they have to wait until they are dogless...)  So I'm thinking maybe just a couple of toys for my nieces, and then some Japanese snacks for my siblings and professionally done photos for the parents?
Ryu and I finally decided where to go for our Christmas vacation. We're heading out to Kinugawa's 鬼怒川ホテル三目月 for two days. On Saturday, we have to go to Omiya to pick up Ryu's new suit and my new glasses (They cost $340 even with a 20% discount coupon... I don't remember glasses being so expensive!) so we'll also swing by the travel agency and book the package. It looks lovely, but I'm concerned at the fact that it also has an indoor pool with water slides.That also means...the possibility of tons of children staying there. But as we're going during Christmas, Ryu says it's unlikely that there will be many kids there and we don't have to go to the pool anyway. But even if we don't go to the pool, there would be loud kids out and around the hotel, no? Fingers crossed on it, anyway!