Saturday, September 4, 2010


w00t! I'm writing this in Tokyo, Japan! I made it over! Here's a quick run down of what happened so far.

Student Visa - After waiting for nearly 2 month, I took my Certificate of Eligibility to the Japanese Consulate in Honolulu to apply for a student visa. This process usually takes 4 days. However, with some connection and push, I expedited the process to 1 day. So I pick up my student visa the next day and flew out to Japan! (Literally, the day I picked up my visa was the day I flew out!)

Housing - It took 10 days, but I FINALLY found a place to live for the year. Finding a place isn't easy, but it's even harder when you're a foreigner. They don't trust you. I don't blame them...but c'mon. With the help of Nippon Keidanren, I locked down a place. It's super duper uber small. There's a bed, and a desk. That's pretty much it. LoL. But it's fully furnished down to the sheets and towel, and electricity and water is included. Sweet deal!

Certificate of Alien Registration Card - Now that I have an address, I went down to the Ward Office to apply for this card. It takes 2 weeks for it to process. Without this card I can't open a bank account and/or pay for the school's tuition. The law requires the bank to confirm the person's address...without the Alien Registration Card, I have no proof.

School Observation 1 - I visited the first school I'll be observing. I thought I could start right away, but the school needs to inform their parents that I'll be around campus and I also need parent/student signatures approving me to observe. Hopefully by mid September I can start collecting data.

University of Tokyo - I visited the school and met a few important people in charge of the education department. They were all very nice and made me feel welcomed. They even have a "camp" for incoming foreign students that I will be joining! So excited!

So basically, I'm playing the waiting game at the moment. Waiting for the Alien Registration Card so I can open up a bank account and pay for school; Waiting for the school to notify and get parent/student signatures; Waiting for the university to start.

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