Posts Tagged ‘weather’

Its getting towards the end of November but after a whole month of beautiful illuminations, I feel like it should be Christmas already! Its really cold now even though it seems like summer was just a few weeks ago! Thinking about this I suddenly became aware of the absence of cockroaches and mosquitoes which we were plagued with back then, and the lack of cicada songs. It felt so tropical and exotic when I first arrived but now the climate is much more like home with much brighter sunshine.

This week has been pretty stressful with my first major essay and an important presentation in Japanese so to escape from it all I went out and bought some really good comfort food. Boursin, stuff to make pizza, garlic (not sure why this is “comforting” but I miss it!) and English muffins with a view to making eggs Benedict!

One of the other exchange students, Tim, introduced me to a place that sells chicken Donner kebabs – not exactly the same as in London, but maybe even more delicious – probably because it was less fatty and had less pigeon/rat content. It was so good I had to go back and have a second one – terribly greedy I know, but it was about half the size of one at home so I didn’t feel too bad! Tim has been there so often that the kebab-shop-guy knows his name which I think is hilarious, but the guy selling them is very friendly!

A final good-food occurrence was Thanksgiving dinner last night at the other dorm nearby. With the ingredients available Isadora did a fine job from organising everyone and creating a hearty feast of deliciousness to using her Brazilian connections to get 4 “Turkeys”  (which were in fact chickens – only 2 other people noticed other than me so we didn’t say anything!) In case you are wondering why this was such an achievement, I should point out that you cant get whole chickens in Japan. Coming from Dalston where you can get everything from whole cows to monkey meat, I do find this slightly depressing. Things are almost always packaged in individual portion sized amounts which is convenient certainly, but I still find it bizarre that you can buy a bag of 3 slices of bread.

Why 3 slices? It seems that most housewives shop every single day for food so that it is as fresh as possible. They buy what they need for the day ahead and that’s it. The whole concept of a weekly shop, cooking extra for the next day, or taking a doggy bag home from a restaurant is entirely foreign here! (If you are in Japan try doing so and you will get stared at as if you just shouted profanities in your loudest voice.) Slightly different to the American attitude summed up so wonderfully when one person said, “If I go to a restaurant in America and I don’t get enough food on my plate for at least two meals then I am p*****d off”. Luckily Isadora cooked far too much for thanksgiving and I now have a mound of leftovers to work my way through.  Mainly stuffing and mashed potatoes – heaven. The lack of soy sauce maketh me happy.

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According to my INFORMATION FOR NEW STUDENTS fun-pack:


During winter the temperature goes down to about -4°C (25°F).

In the very hot and humid summer, (June-Sept)  temperatures peak at around 35° (95°F) and humidity will sometimes exceed 80%. 

About 10% of earthquakes that occur throughout the world take place in Japan.

A ballpoint pen costs about 100 yen (50p) and one litre of milk costs about 180 yen (90p)


So the next question is: how to pack enough clothes for all the dramatically different seasons, as well as all my other junk, into just 20kg…

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