Friday, 20 June 2008


As I sip instant coffee from my DOA boobs mug, I can't help but think of the little disappointments I've come across this week.

For starters my sore throat persisted for a whole week. The damn thing would just not leave me. I even had to excuse myself from a class momentarily to have a drink of water. I just couldn't speak.

Recently I received what I thought were my health insurance payment slips finally arriving. They look the same. Each month I now have to pay 12,000 yen.

I expected a bit of a hike, so I resigned myself to the situation. In the next few days I was shocked to realise these were resident tax payments, NOT my NHI!

On Tuesday I watched as I was sitting safely on the train, two elderly women getting quite violently pushed along as all the salarymen impatiently boarded the train. Just another Tuesday I guess.

Wednesday was my time-out for a while. I always look forward to the "Station Beers" next to The Diamond complex, where there is a great view.

And no, that's not it. I mean the passing parade of sweet looking Japanese girls walking to catch their trains home, watching me as I scoff my nikuman and chu-hi.

Tonight there was a Japanese man in our usual standing spot, so we came across the not-so-good idea of parking ourselves on the other dimly-lit side near the Koban.

Not as much to look at over here. A young guy with a guitar sat next to us and thoughtfully decided to take it out and tune it for ages before playing a song I've never heard of. Bit of an average player though. Maybe he was expecting us to say how great he was.

Even though it is clearly posted EVERYWHERE that smoking wasn't permitted, there were smokers puffing away nearby. One guy cautiously looked at us, before sitting down close by.

My colleague had enough, and yelled "NO SMOKING". The guy apologised in English, "sorry, sorry", but he still stayed around like a bad smell, looking like he wanted to kill someone.

At that point we just decided to go back to our old position, near the Diamond. MUCH better.

On arriving home with the usual level of toxicity, I noticed another envelope almost identical to the one I received earlier.

THIS was my National Health Insurance! I was so pleased to find out that my payments have gone from 1000 yen a month, to 7940 yen a month. At that point of the night, it was just too much to take, so I just went straight to bed.

I knew today would end up not so good from the moment I tried to catch my train.

I watched the closing doors laugh at me, because the "effing" Japanese were moving down the stairs at sloth speed, not allowing me to get on in time.

I had in mind to stop off at Oimachi where there was a Hard Off. Note that I say "was". I was more than a little pissed to find the building was white-boarded up and covered with scaffolding. Looks like a central Tokyo Hard Off is just a memory now.

To top things off, today I find out my work don't want me to wear T-shirts for kids classes.

I wore them because I feel less hot, and much more comfortable wearing them. They say I can bring another shirt (but not even a polo). This really defeats the purpose why I wanted to wear a T in the first place.

Only one more day to end this week. What else can go wrong?