Take me to your leader.
Let’s see … today is currently Friday, making yesterday Thursday … ok, I know where I am now!
Part of yesterday’s many travels included heading to the local Ward Office (The Showa Ward in my case) which is connected to the Gokiso subway station, and giving them lots of information, photos and some of my time so that I can get my proper Alien Registration Card. Yep, it’s my official form of ID while here in Japan that tells Banks, Mobile companies, persons of authority, etc that I am indeed a resident of the country, and it’d be appreciated if you let me get/do things that other residents get to do/have.
It’s even better that they have fairly decent English speakers helping out with this. Helped out immensely that the secretary for Jen’s department speaks a few languages, and could translate for us as well and help us along. In addition to registering for our foreigner cards, we also enrolled in the national health insurance – something that is compulsory for all residents as well. Hopefully I don’t have to use it while here during my stay.
A small tour of some of the amenities near other subway stations followed, as did some pretty amazing curry at an Indian restaurant we found near the Imaike station. Yum!!!
Jen was able to open a bank account with ease, especially because we had Otomo-san with us translating. I, on the other hand, didn’t fare so well. My teller required that I had a signature stamp (Hanko) to open mine – and that’s something that I haven’t yet acquired. Jen’s special and didn’t need one (which I will not argue with) but I guess that since I have no real income coming in at the time, I’m not at a huge loss not having one. There are some other banks that I’ve read that are a little more foreigner friendly – and do most of their online banking in English too, so I’ll be looking into that in the near future.
Our new place has electricity, water, and after today (it being Friday) I’ve successfully taken half of our baggae to the new place and unpacked most of it. After heading from the hotel to the University I went back and did a house-hotel run twice today to get the bags. Tomorrow we each have a single piece of rolling luggage – easy!
I do believe we are attending some festival tomorrow too. Jen hasn’t quite filled me in on all the details, but it should be a good time nonetheless. After that I imagine we’ll be checking out some of the local shopping areas and getting stuff that we need for the new place.
Internet will be dodgy through the weekend, we only have access to the University’s network right now and Jen doesn’t have her login info just yet. This won’t really work for our needs at home (especially since this means I technically don’t have my own access to the internet) so we are looking into some kind of broadband. Our Cable apparently comes to us from a company called “Star Cat.” Purrrrfect.
Monday we head off to Ishigaki Island. Google it. It’s between Okinawa and Taiwan. Jen is giving some science talks about her Thesis there and I’m essentially going to be a beach bum for a week and try to learn as much Japanese as I can while swimming, snorkeling, sun bathing and experiencing the local fare.
Ya know … I could get used to this.
Photos of the new place, its views, etc will be properly up once my Laptop gets some internet juice in it again. For those that want to find it and check out the exterior – follow this! Researchers’ Village YAKUMO
I will add in that on October 20th we get to actually pick up our Alien Registration Cards. Till then I have a handy certificate saying that I’ve applied for one and it’s being made, so please just pretend I have one right now and let me open up accounts and do things in Japan.
At that point, I will officially have my Alien Registration Card. Now I just need to learn how to say this posts’ title in Japanese, and then I can go meet Godzilla. At least, that’s how I think it works.