Wednesday, July 20, 2005

preparations for Japan

These are going slowly but surely, but tomorrow I'm off to London for 4 days as I'm going to a reception at the Japanese Embassy on Friday, which should be fun! Been feeling like a tourist the past week as I've been buying a lot of gifts and mingling with all the foreigners in the tourist tat shops in Bath. Still, I have managed to buy lots of postcards, keyrings, pencils, tea bags, tea towels and some nice books about England & Bath. Still looking for those miniature bottles of whisky....

Had to buy 3 new sets of shoes yesterday as I have to wear different shoes indoors for Japanese schools. Great! I also bought a bunch of magazines about football, music and cars that I thought might be interesting for the children.
Only a week and a half to go!! And I'm struggling with packing to go away for 4 days!! This should be fun....

Wednesday, July 13, 2005


A long, tiring but really enjoyable day. I had my graduation ceremony at the University of Warwick to receive my BSc (Hons) International Business degree, class 2.i ! Very hot weather, and after initially having a few problems with traffic when getting up to the M4 from Bath, we got there with time to spare.
Looked good in the gown (even though I say so myself), and we had a free lunch buffet provided by the Business School in a marquee overlooking the lake by the Scarman Road building. Ceremony was good, just the right length with a nice music programme, the Chancellor giving a short speech and Simon Mayo being awarded with an honorary degree (and a funny speech after that included a description of a few of his antics when he was a student of History & Politics at Warwick).
Photos in the piazza afterwards while chucking our mortarboards, and then all too soon it was time to leave with all the clobber we had collected during the day!
Went back a slightly strange route as part of the Fosseway was closed, but we ended up finding a really nice pub called the Kilkenny quite unexpectedly just as we pulled up next to a T-junction. Stopped for a light supper in the garden of the pub, which was just right and very relaxing.
Got back home just after 10, unfortunately discovering that my grandmother had had a chest pain episode and had been taken to hospital. She went back home with my uncle though which was fortunate!

Right as it's so ridiculously late, I'm going to bed!
Night all!

Sunday, July 10, 2005

pub lunch with Jo

Very hot day today, but had made plans to go and see Joseph for lunch over in Bristol. Went to a nice pub called the Highbury Vaults in Clifton and had a cheese ploughmans, washed down with a pint of Waggledancer. I miss good pub grub! Don't have it enough. Took an hour to get to Bristol though cos there was loads of traffic in Brislington and some traffic lights were stuck on red which held us up for ages. Joseph lives in a very nice flat with 2 girls just up from the BRI, and I have to say I was very envious of it. Not fair, especially as he was only paying £70 a week for it!!! Apparently, one of the flats in the block was bought for Euan Blair but he didn't live there in the end cos of all the controversy surrounding the sale of the flat - still, he ended up on the waterfront instead, again not bad!

Gonna sit outside now and enjoy the rest of the sunshine. Have a good Sunday everyone!

Saturday, July 09, 2005

photo sharing

it appears that this blog doesn't like uploading photos, so I have created the account below to host photos
one day I'll figure out what technology is

i might have to send you an email so that you can view them, once I've figured out how all this works

My first post on my new blog! how exciting

Hello whoever is going to read this! So this is my first post on my new blog of thoughts, photos and general randomness. The main idea of this is to keep a written and photo record of my time in Japan on the JET programme ( as I'm going to be an Assistant Language Teacher (ALT) in the city of Shiojiri in Nagano prefecture from 30th July! Flying BA, Virgin or Japan Airlines (JAL), but don't know yet. Only 3 weeks to go, which is quite scary. Lots to do before then.

Went to JET pre-departure orientation at Brunel University on Wednesday & Thursday (6th & 7th July), and we were lucky to miss the bombings in London on the Thursday morning. Some people had to stay a further night as they couldn't get back to central London.
I managed to get a lift with a group of girls (Julie, Karla & Vicky) to Leamington, then a train to Birmingham as I had previously arranged to stay overnight with my friend Zoe. Friday we then went to Warwick uni to pick up the tickets for our graduation (Tuesday 12th July, 3pm for me!!), so I'll be in my robes next week chucking my mortar board in the air.

I'm hoping that this blog is gonna allow me to upload loads of pictures. If not, I will try to find another site and post the details up in due course.

See you all soon, and good luck with whatever you're up to. My email address is: so there's no excuse for not keeping in touch.

I will probably send you my address in Japan (and the UK for those who may not know it), rather than posting it here for all and sundry to read and bombard me with junk.