I am nomad. Hear me roar.


Friday, 26 November 2010

Cache and Carry

Cache Converted

Last week I received my first introduction to Geocaching. Geocaching is a form of digital orienteering, where participants armed with a GPS and a set of coordinates, traipse all over the countryside in search of capsules called Caches. Sounds a bit computerised boy-scout otaku ├╝ber geek, right? This is what I thought initially also. However Diglett, one of my workmates who goes Geocaching regularly, invited me along, so I thought I'd give it a go.

I had so much fun.

The Cache trail we were following lead us all through the Shigizan and TakaYasu mountains of Yao City and neighbouring Nara. Which means technically we walked all the way from Osaka into the next prefecture. This sounds a little bit more impressive than it was but we were trekking for over 5 hours. The hiking track meandered through some very beautiful country and afforded me my first real appreciation of the changing leaves of Autumn. The colours are fabulous ranging from a deep carmine, to rich amber, to orange orange, right up to bright canary gold. It was beautiful, and I did manage to value it regardless of my heaving and panting up the mountains.

The coordinates you follow take you within about a 2 metre radius of the Cache, after that it is up to you to locate the capsule. They are carefully hidden, so as not to be muggled (accidentally stolen by non magic folk). Sometimes you have simple clues to aid you. Sometimes the clues don't help at all. It really is like an adult Easter egg hunt.

Each Cache contains a slip of paper on which you write your User Name to confirm the find, and many also hold little treasures. The rule of treasure is that you can only take treasure, if you leave treasure, but as Diglett and I did not have any that day we took nothing but photographs, and left nothing but foot prints.

Darkness fell on our adventure just as we were locating the second last capsule, we stumbled down the hill to the cable-car that would return us to the trains and city, quickly laying hands on the last Cache just outside the station.

We had had a very successful day locating 12 of a possible 14 Caches on the trail, (one of which is believed to have been muggled, so really only one eluded us) and seeing a large part of Japan which I otherwise probably wouldn't have visited. Beginners luck most likely, but I'm definitely willing to give Geocaching another crack to find out.

The Geo Journey

Mama Cat Day

Isn't it great when plans turn out exactly as they should?

Mama Cat and I had had these plans for months. We had to, as we work together and we have to submit our schedules a month in advance.

The plan was simple, have a whole day just hanging out, and that, is exactly what we did.

It was awesome.

We started by having lunch at the burger joint of a mutual acquaintance. Which turned out to be the best burger I have had in Japan, and definitely one of the Top 5 burgers I have had in the entire world. Suffice it to say it was pretty good.

Mama Cat and I then headed to Shinsaibashi for a stroll before whiling away the rest of the afternoon hollering our lungs out at karaoke.

All in all, a fantastic day.

Thank you Mama Cat.

Thursday, 11 November 2010

Tennoji Zoo

Manic Moving

At 08:20 I moved out of the Guch.

By 9 o'clock I had dumped all of my belongings in the shoebox I will call home for the rest of the time that I am in Japan.

11am saw me stepping off the train at Kobe to meet a friend, and off to a fantastic day of sightseeing, fine dining and fancy five star hotels.

Monday, 8 November 2010

Friday, 5 November 2010

Leaving Letter

To the inhabitants of the Guch,

I can not continue to live in a house where I am disrespected.

I am moving out, something I'm sure at least one of you will view as a victory. Feel free to, I don't care enough.

My time in Japan is limited so instead of seeking some kind of Pyrrhic victory, which would only succeed in wasting my own time and energy, I have decided to gracefully walk away.

To German Guy and Local Lass especially, I'm sorry I didn't get a chance to know you better.

To all, keep in touch if you would like, of not, Sayonara.

Good life and good luck.

Little Girl Lost

Happy Japan-niversary!

My fourth month has been a bit tumultuous. Moving from my sharehouse, because one of my housemates was being less than respectful, was not perfect, but I am now comfortably residing in my very own apartment. It has been an opportunity to see another side of life here in Japan.

My only regret about the move is that I didn't get a chance to get to know my newer housemates, German Guy and Local Lass better before I left. They moved in just before I went to Okinawa.

Still relishing the adventure.

Thursday, 4 November 2010

Blown Away

There was just something in the air that day. I'd been planning to do laundry, I'd been planning to do chores, I'd been planning to be domestic all day.

But, there was something in the air, something playful, riding on the wind. Something called out, enticed, a Siren's song, like the clever North Wind in Chocolat.

I scattered my plans to the four winds and set sail, with very little idea of where I would be blown to.

I found myself in Temma.

Just any other day in Temma