blacklilly: (Default)
It's cold and raining.  Boo.

I was a little rushed off my feet the last week.  Despite coming up with the grand plan to reduce my working week to Tuesday-Friday, I've ended up working 6 days straight, having taken up a short-term contract teaching at Waseda University.  It's quite fortuitous that I was offered the job as I had just worked out my predicted paycheck for January/February next year and things were looking a little hairy.  I have a month off both of my hourly paid jobs in December/January (no classes scheduled - not my laziness) so I was looking at being down a large amount of cash.  If I save the extra cash from this month's six-day a week craziness I should have enough to get by, but I may be on the brown rice and miso soup diet...

Other stuff I've done/am doing: 
  • am currently house-bound for the afternoon as I'm hennaing my hair.  As a result, things are looking very clean and tidy.  
  • I quit the gym on Tuesday after getting pissed off with a rude old lady the previous Friday, and then finding myself on the elliptical trainer wondering what the hell I was doing holding myself captive to the hell that is Japanese TV programming when it was gloriously sunny outside.  I quit straight after my work out. 
  • Then, in order to keep the exercising going, I went for a walk on Thursday morning, got stupidly lost and ended up somewhere along Waseda Dori.  It took me 30 minutes to get home, turning an hour-long walk into a 90-minute, 6 kilometre adventure. 
  • I've also been doing yoga everyday in order to prepare myself for this holiday next month.  I'll be doing 3 hours a day for a week, so I need to be getting ready for that, plus doing yoga is the closest thing to peace I get lately.
  • I've got my writing itch back after recovering from the mental wasteland caused by the summer.  Now, what to do with it...
  • November 6th was my 4-year Japanniversary - I spent it in an amazing house in Izu (see picture at the end).
  • Had Korean food in "Korea-town" (Okubo) yesterday.  Bibimpa is deeelicious.
  • I may have become slightly addicted to the first season of "Lost".  Help me - there are six seasons!!!
Day 09 - Favourite stores/shopping centers.
Hmm.  I don't enjoy shopping much - at least, clothes shopping is something I do for purpose only, not for pleasure, and I tend to stick to the European stores - Zara, H&M, Next.  I'm a devotee of Lush and The Body Shop, but again both are British in origin.  Japanese stores...??  I like Loft for it's singular ability to fuel my stationery addiction.  I used to go in there on my breaks in Yokohama and play with the pens.  I also found my favourite pen in a 1.6mm nib there.  I also like FrancFranc, and I also recently found an amazing peppermint tea called "Sheherazade" in a tea shop called Lupicia.  Tower Records in Shibuya is good to visit, though I have to exercise extreme self-control when presented with all the pretty books. 

Which reminds me.  I am currently fixated upon this hoodie I found on Lululemon, but which they don't have in the colour I want (pink and black) so I'm deliberating about the green one.  Sigh.

blacklilly: (Default)
Well, I have (for the third week running) not been to bed until at least 3am. I'm beginning to associate Sundays with general feelings of ennui, pain and an extreme desire for unconsciousness. The sleeping does, however, make up for a recent couple of nights with little sleep. My brain decided recently that 4am is a really good time to start chattering away to itself, however providing me with dreams about snowboarding down mountains in 4x4 vehicles does not make the lack of sleep any more bearable.

Anyway, whilst lying on my sofa, what better thing to do than surf the internet and look at things you can't have. Having recently visited the new H&M store in Ginza (to get into which I had to queue for 5 minutes) I've decided that I need a new jacket (I bought a thick winter coat in H&M). I have my old red velvet jacket, but its too big for me and is starting to look a tad threadbare and ripped. Top Shop has a couple of goodies here, here and here. I think the third one is a little to ruffly for daily wear, though. I'm also coveting this rather nice punky biker jacket. There's a red version which looks super cool, but would look pretty bad on me I think.

As I've now decided that I'm allowed to buy one item of new clothing a month (or maybe two) I'm planning a trip to the next new H&M in Harajuku, which opened yesterday. This also takes me close to the Harajuku TopShop and the various other cool vintage shops nearby.

I have a suspicion that the recent inability to sleep is related to having a pillow which is getting rather flat, and a futon which is not only on a slight slope in my loft, but which is also suffering from the same effects of time. So, I will be in Muji or Don Quixote at some point this week hunting down cheap pillows and some sort of memory foam thing to put on top of my futon. The winter is marching closer and I feel the need to cocoon. This was easy in Ina as blankets and cushions were in great supply, thanks to the various hand-me-downs I inherited. Sadly, I had to abandon them when I moved to Tokyo. But at least I have a kotatsu (that's like a coffee table with a heater underneath, to those who are unfamiliar), which is a thing of joy on cold days.

Tomorrow I'm off to Shinagawa again to pick what I hope will be a 3 year visa. And if so, I'll be coughing up a rather sick-making 6000yen to get multiple re-entry permit, should I ever be able to afford to get on a plane again. Then it's belly-dancing, private classes and a bit of food shopping before coming home to cook for the bento box and study for next month's 日本語 exam.
blacklilly: (Default)
Last Thursday I was at a loose end at work so I decided to go and kill a couple of hours in Loft. Loft is possibly the best shop in Japan, if not the world. I has every object you could possibly desire it, apart from clothes.

One reason I go there is that they not only have hot pink Moleskine notebooks (which I haven't bought yet because I can't decide if I want the pink, green or blue ones), but they also have my favourite Pilot Super Grip pen in a 1.2mm nib. In fact their stationery department makes me slightly weak-kneed with joy. I went there to buy a new notebook for my new Japanese class, and a new mechanical pencil. I don't actually NEED a new pencil, the old one works just fine, but the clip is broken and the rubber grip is starting to peel off. So I spent a good hour playing with pens and pencils, stroking notebooks and testing expensive, but wonderfully purple, nail varnish. Anyway, nail varnish aside, I'm glad that I'm not the only one with a stationery fetish. See this article in The Times.

And just so you can all enjoy my purchases, here's a picture of my new red notebook, with a blue one behind, my favourite Pilot pen, and my new sexy mechanical pencil.



blacklilly: (Default)
It dawned on me, an hour or so after I woke up this morning, that I would have to go shopping today. I had temporarily forgotten that the contents of my fridge consisted of a grapefruit, a knob of butter, some cheese, and an old lime. Thus was the end of my half-awake languishing in bed.
Let's Go Shopping )

Ikimasho

Mar. 6th, 2007 01:45 pm
blacklilly: (Default)
Yesterday's trip to Tokyo was very pleasant. It was actually so warm that I was sweating at some points, which serves to remind me why I will be avoiding Toyko come the summer. I met Noriko at the bus stop in Shinjuku and after a stop at Starbucks (this is an actual treat for me, so starved are we of coffee in Ina) headed over to Harajuku. Noriko was highly amused that I was guiding her, a life-long Tokyo citizen, around her city, though she did admit that Harajuku is not her shopping location of choice.

We hung about in Lush for a while and I resisted the urge to buy everything in sight, coming away with a rather heavy bag full of shampoo, henna (I intend to become a stunning red-head at the weekend) and bath bombs to last me a good eight baths or so. We then wandered about La Foret, a seven storey building full of trendy boutiques (and Topshop, rather worryingly). I found a cool vintage shop but declined to try anything on as it was clearly too small. I tried another top on in another boutique, which looked promising, yet, I struggled to get the thing off once it was on. As is often the case when shopping for clothes, I become despondent and easily distracted by accessories. Such as this rather lovely Swarovski crystal and silver skull necklace I purchased:




I even bought the matching earrings. I've no idea where I'm going to wear it, especially in this town, but it will be a nice addition to the wardrobe. I'm craving fishnet, leather cuffs and my pinstripe corset now, they'd go well with it. Alas, living in the middle of nowhere means that there is little opportunity for such amusements.

Anyway, we met up with Yusuke in Shibuya and went to an okonomiyaki place for lunch. I wish I'd taken a photo of Noriko cooking up this delight for us, but I was too busy yakking to think about it until it was all too late. Okonomiyaki is like a big fried pancake mixed with vegetables, seafood or whatever you want to add to it. We had a particularly yummy one with mochi and cheese which I enjoyed scraping off of the hot plate.

We then headed to Tower Records, where I bought the new NIN live DVD and (inspired by [livejournal.com profile] greygirlbeast most recent edition of Sirenia Digest, picked up David Bowie's "Outside". I checked out the foreign mags, the tattoo mags, the gossip mags, but found nothing to tempt me, so treated myself to Philosophy in the Boudoir by the Marquis de Sade and "Kwaidan", a collection of Japanese folk tales by Lafcadio Hearn.

Having heard that 109 (ichi-maru-kyu) in Shibuya was worth checking out, if only to see what the teenage girls are wearing, we wandered about for a bit, but after trying on yet another two tops that didn't fit due to my stupendous breasts I gave up. We checked out Seibu, a large department where I found some goat's cheese, however, at £10 for a log of the stuff I figured I could go without a little longer. And then we wandered back from Shibuya to Harajuku, stopping on the way at a rockabilly store, which was blaring proper rock n' roll. The staff even had quiffs and teddy boy outfits. A little pricey though.

It was getting on by then, so Yusuke and I headed back to Shinjuku while Noriko went to meet her husband (who had just flown in from England) in Ginza. We ended up back into Starbucks to kill 20 minutes until my bus left and then I was trundling through the night sitting next to a man who was eating stinky food and took up most of the seat by refusing to put his legs together. Allegedly this inability in the male to close their legs is anatomical, but that's really nothing a bit of rearrangement (which they're always doing anyway) wouldn't solve.

I got back home just after 10pm and took de Sade to bed with me.
blacklilly: (Default)
Have joined gym down here. V. posh - they all drive Beemers. Overdid it yesterday though and spent day in a very hot tube network limping.

PAid for plane tickets - yippee! Then went to Forbidden Planet and bought a mini Living Dead Doll. Also found gorgeous Dave McKean Vertigo Tarot set so bought that too. I remember seeing a set last year in Dublin and have been drooling ever since. Felt a bit sick and tired so went home and drank expensive tea in Costa in Slough while waiting for bus home.

Bastard brother wants to use phone. Hate him. Are we even related? Must go now, after brief outburst.

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