Journey to Freedom S01E03: You shall not pass!

Today’s lesson was all about roads and overtaking.
First, I’d like to start off by saying how I am LOVING these instructors. Not only are they they very definition of professionalism, they are also fun. Yes, they are.
The structure of the lessons are simple, theories mixed with actual scenarios. The teaching medium is not only limited to text books, but they also have actual videos shot on the road to help students visualize the importance of each law, and what consequences there may be when you don’t abide by them.

Also, they try to explain to us why certain rules exist. For example, you are not allowed to overtake vehicles if the road is less than 6meters in width. The rationalization is that in Japan, no car is wider than 2.5meters. Hence if you have to cars side by side each other, you have at most 5meters, plus the safety distance you need between them, hence the only 6 meter and above rule for overtaking.

Again I must reiterate how fun these classes are. I am loving my school at the moment.

Journey to Freedom S01E02: Am I Normal?

March 19, 2013

I just enrolled yesterday at Koyama Driving School Tsunashima, one of Japan’s most prestigious schools for driving and I am really excited. So excited that I unintentionally arrived an hour and a half early for my aptitude exam. Today I’ll also be attending my first class、運転者の心得、loosely translated to “Driver’s Knowledge”.

When I arrived at the campus, one of the front desk staff, Ms. Mizuno, immediately handed me my schedule, and escorted me to the other room to have my picture taken. I thought to myself, Oh no. I am in the process of growing my hair longer, and the state that it is in at the moment, is not exactly photo friendly. But alas! No one is exempted from having their picture taken. Continue reading “Journey to Freedom S01E02: Am I Normal?”

Journey to Freedom S01E01: Throw ‘Em The Money

I love how they implemented trains in Japan. You can almost go anywhere you want as long as you have the time to do so. Places like the sandy beaches of Izu, or the lush forests of Tanzawa are my favorites to visit. It’s that convenient.

However, there are still times when having a car is a more convenient form of transportation as compared to trains. Camping, for example, requires you to bring basic items like tents and grills (and the marinated food to grill). Bringing all of those on a train can be a little bothersome and tiring. The wiser thing to do is to just drive to the location, and have all those items in the trunk. But what if you don’t have a car? Well, good thing you’re in Japan as car rentals are crazy cheap. You only need a valid driver’s license to rent one.

Problem: I don’t have a Japanese driver’s license. Continue reading “Journey to Freedom S01E01: Throw ‘Em The Money”

Windows 8 Upgrade Experience

I have always been, and will always be, an early adopter. It’s something I take pride in. Other people may call us(people like me) lab rats, or experimental mice, but that doesn’t stop us from buying/testing products once they get released.

Most of the time this way of thinking pays off in huge quantities: iPad, OSX Upgrades
Other times it’s just a plain nightmare. Case and point: my upgrade experience from Windows 7 Home Premium to Windows 8 Pro. To describe it using a single word, I’d say the entire upgrade experience was horrendous. Continue reading “Windows 8 Upgrade Experience”

Pet Peeve: Incessant “Facebookers”

First Scenario:
Imagine yourself at a restaurant. You are with your loved one enjoying a nice conversation. Then your food arrives. (Snap, upload). The scent of the food whets your appetite. (phone buzzes) You take a bite. Yumm… Pure pleasure… (sound of the keyboard). You ask him/her how their day was. (phone buzzes and gets picked up). (They check and see it’s a comment on the food earlier.) The person then replies that their day was ok. Nothing extraordinary happened. (Takes a quick glance on their phone again). (Giggles) Then proceeds to reply at that comment that was made earlier. “They said that the picture I took was really appetizing.” Then you ask to whom she is replying to. He/She replies that it’s a friend.
Etc… Etc… Etc… Continue reading “Pet Peeve: Incessant “Facebookers””

Id

The 7:30 AM alarm rang. With eyes closed I used my hands to look for the oppressive object. I grabbed it and desperately pushed some buttons to make it, and the fire alarm sound it was making, stop. I somehow noticed that the room was slightly dimmer than usual. I opened my eyes, looked around and saw someone sleeping next to me.

“He’s wearing my green shirt!”, I thought.

His back facing my direction, I can hear him breathing in his sleep. I tapped his shoulders to wake him up. But from out of nowhere his hand grabbed mine, pulled it towards him, put it under his arms and clipped it. It wasn’t like I was powerless to stop him, but it seemed like my whole being didn’t want me to. My body started moving on its own, Continue reading “Id”

Chocolat Milk Tea

20120328-155537.jpg
0% Fat
Low Calorie Drink

It’s one of those days again where I’m craving for some new drink. This time though, I wanted something light on calories. Perusing the shelves, I found this tetra fella here, the last of its kind. It says non-fat, low-calorie chocolate milk tea drink.

Actually, I stopped reading after low-calorie and chocolate. The surprising thing is that this drink is actually pretty good. I’ve had my share of less than refreshing low-calorie drinks. But this one, by just a hair-strand, hits the spot. Thanks KIRIN.

Picasso

March 25, 2012. I woke up to a steady beam of sunlight on my face. I had unintentionally left Luffy and his crew(curtain patterns) separated before going to bed, and this morning, I paid the price for that mistake. I extended my right arm onto the outskirts of my bed and felt a familiar hard object just below my waist. I grabbed it, pulled it closer to my face and pressed the home button. It was 9:30 AM.

Continue reading “Picasso”

Grace

Did they put something in the water?

My friend, Grace, is leaving Japan for good.
And I’m going to miss her a lot.
We met at a snowboarding trip last year, 2011.

It’s always hard when friends leave. Because whether you like it or not, they leave a hole, a void in your heart that takes some time to numb. Grace is the first one with an XX chromosome that I’ve ever had the pleasure of boarding with, and incidentally one of the better ones. She’s adventurous, a moderate risk-taker, and a good example that women can play rough with the boys, while still maintaining their more than attractive feminine aspects. And for that, she will forever hold a special place in my heart.

Grace may be going back to Cebu, and our physical interactions may be severely limited, but she will always be, for me, the standard with which the next crop of women snowboarders will be measured against with.

Again, did they put something in the water?