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Gishi no Mokusou

Alex Forencich's contemplations on Life, Engineering, and Japan

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Tag: International House

We decided to attempt a Christmas dinner in the American style. However, seeing as we’re in Japan, it didn’t go quite as planned. The original idea was a nice large roast ham. We could do the ham. We could do the roast. The large part, though, evaded us. The largest hams we could find were only about fist sized. Mashed potatoes, easy peasy. But gravy? Fail. We ended up eating curry (with meat so it wasn’t that bad), baked potatoes (well, we had already bought them before realizing gravy doesn’t exist in Japan), two itty-bitty roast hams (cooked in a microwave for ovens are also scarce), and some canned pineapple and peach (hey, we’re college students–it’s less work!). Unfortunately, due to a scheduling miscommunication, I did not end up with any pictures of our miserable failure before it was eaten.

After eating, we put on a couple of movies–The History of the World, Part 1 and Rush Hour 3–and played several rounds of Jenga with an exceedingly annoying plastic Jenga set. I did manage to at least partially document the succession of failures and triumphs, so it wasn’t a total loss. After that we played a couple of rounds of twister with slightly confused rules and then went outside for a snowball fight. All in all it was an…interesting…evening.

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Winter is coming. Over the past couple of days, the temperature has dropped several degrees and a beastly breeze has started blowing. Time to bundle up! Since I did not have class yesterday but I did have to run up to Aobayama campus to visit the lab, I decided to walk over and take a few pictures of Sendai on the way.

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The Tohoku University International Festival (東北大学国際祭り touhoku daigaku kokusai matsuri) took place yesterday on the softball field by the international house. There were people there from countries all over the world selling various foods from their home countries. There was also a stage for traditional dances and music.

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Sendai

Oct 16

Being out of an internet connection for two weeks is not fun. I haven’t had a connection in my room until my modem from NTT showed up a few days ago. But even then, it was terribly unreliable until I had time to stop by Yodobashi Camera and pick up a router. Now that I’m actually reconnected with the world again, here are some updates.

On the 27th, I made the trip from Tokyo (東京) to Sendai (仙台) via the Tohoku Shinkansen (東北新幹線). The scheduling was slightly annoying because I had to check out by 10 AM and I had to be in Sendai at 3 PM, but the Shinkansen trip would only take about 2 hours, leaving me with about 3 hours to kill. I pretty much headed right for the station after leaving the Weekly Mansion since it was raining and I had to deal with my luggage. Fortunately, I had the subway shortcut figured out so I managed to get to the station without getting terribly wet or dropping my luggage in the middle of the street. The subway shortcut, by the way, simply involves taking the escalator down into the subway station on the west side of Hakusan Dori, crossing under the street, then taking the escalator on the other side directly into the JR Sugamo Station. It’s quite handy on cold and rainy days and when one is in a hurry and the light just turned red.

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