Orientation: Week One

Orientation week one is now down and over with, and it was quite boring. We went over the rules and regulations, of course a must, and also a surefire way to ensure that the students are aware of them - unless they are zoning out. There was also an exam to test your level of proficiency in Japanese; it will determine which class you are being placed into. But really I wonder how the classes are going to be like, will the class really be the class suited for me? I do hope so, and no I haven't gotten into the class I wanted to get into - sadly. If you are a bad test taker like me, there is not much you can do. My advice is to go on and do the best you can. And if you end up relearning things, learn it and make it become a natural thought. So one day, hopefully, I will be speaking Japanese without having to think of what a word might mean. Then that test would be a breeze!

Rikkyo University is quite interesting visually.

Vines cover the school, the library, the church and other buildings...The school has two campus', one in Ikebukuro , picture above, and the other located near Shiki. I haven't been to the one near Shiki yet. Ikebukuro campus is mainly for Business related majors and the Shiki campus is for other majors, like Art or Science. Commuting to and from school can really dig a hole into your pocket here, 300Yen one way from my dorm to Ikebukuro - which is just about $8 round trip. But when I can get my Student Commuter Pass it will not be so bad, should be about half the price - almost like the regular commute on the metro back home. If you do find yourself living in Japan for quite some time, like a month or more, you can buy a regular commuter pass - saves quite some money.

[Main Dining Room]
I know a lot of people wonder if Tokyo, Japan, is an expensive place or not. And to tell you from personal experience you won't feel that it is expensive if you go to the right places. They have a lot of places around for quite a cheap price, and one place especially is popular with the Japanese - Izakaya. Izakaya is a bar like place that serves drinks and food, and the food is quite tasty. But if you don't feel like eating what is offered at Izakaya you can find equally cheap ramen, soba, udon, or rice meals around in different restaurants. The rumor of Japanese food being served in an extremely small portion is not really true, it really depends on what you eat. For a normal person from America I can barely finish my food when I eat out at ramen shops or anywhere else. But if you go to MacDonald, which is a must, you'd be surprised. The food is a bit more expensive, of better quality, delicious, and smaller. The sizes they offered are small, medium, and large - where the small is equivalent to a kids' size and a large is a regular when comparing it to American MacDonald standards.
[Chicken for breakfast?]
[Inexpensive fresh sushi that taste so good!  This is conveyor belt sushi AKA 回転寿司, kaiten-zushi]
Other then food you might find everything else a tad more expensive, only because of the exchange rate. The current exchange rate is 74 yen to the dollar, so 100 yen is about $1.35. If the exchange rate was even 1 yen to 1 cent, then the prices for things would be just about the same as it would be to live in NYC. Oh, the suspense of exchange rates! Well that shouldn't hold you back from getting out and going on your unforgettable adventures. The best way to save some money while seeing the most might actually be going on tours, if you don't have friend(s) or an idea of what to do while you are here - or really anywhere else in the world.
So if you were to go somewhere right now, where would it be and why?


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