It’s Saturday evening, and I’ve been spending most of the day just relaxing and recovering from the last few days events. Let me try and start this out. Thursday was Brian’s last day here in Swinging Nippon, so we went out to Bikkuri Ramen for the second time in the week. On the way there with Yuji, he took too long in the bathroom so I got on the train without him. Also, there happened to be a IES girl on the train so I just let Yuji catch up on the next train. 結構オレらしいな話なんだ…

So for Bikkuri, it was me, Brian, Yuji, Ari, and his brother Josh, who is here for a few days before they head to China. And since pretty much every Japanese person I talked to asks this, YES, Ari’s brother is also very tall. Although it was a very fun and good time, it wasn’t quite up to the gyoza-eating level as last semester’s was. We all started with a Ramen-Gyoza set, and then Ari and I were the only ones who started going with only gyoza. Yuji dropped out pretty quick, Brian ate a lot, and Josh ate a lot of sets. Ari ended up eating 30 gyoza (5 plates) total, and I got 31 since Brian gave me 1 extra. It was a cheap victory, but it didn’t matter because we were all still so disgustingly full of cheap Chinese food. I love Bikkuri Ramen.

After that, on the way walking back, Brian got Yuji with the most solid kancho performance I have ever seen. It was a good job, although let’s not forget how horrible and terrible the kancho really is. I won’t go into detail here. Me and Brian went to go chill in the sweet internet cafe we found, Air’s Cafe, and just like the last time, ended up spending about twice as much time as we meant to in there. The place is so sweet. It’s only like 105 yen per 15 minutes, or 3 hours for 1050 yen. You get your own nice little cubicle with a nice computer/internet, a huge LCD monitor, a leather chair and ottoman that reclines almost fully back, magazines and about 1700 comics you can read, and also unlimited coffee, tea, soda, etc. It’s a marvelous place. If it had video games and showers, I would probably live there forever.

After killing so much time, I got home and realized that I needed to edit the IES Train Instruction video together before Brian left. Brian also had to pack up his stuff, as he was planning on heading for the airport pretty early in the morning. I ended up working on and off, falling asleep here and there. The previous night I didn’t sleep much because I had to go to film the summer Japanese classes at 9AM. Actually, it turned into a disaster because I didn’t get clearance ahead of time, I had to talk to the program coordinator, got confused as Japanese the entire time, and it was just a stressful experience just all together. Anyway, I got the train video done, I think it’s actually pretty decent. It’s only about 8 minutes long, but it covers most of the basics and doesn’t have any retarded jokes like the previous students’ video did. Additionally, I tried encoding Seth and Ari’s IES Sayonara Party video for CD-Roms to give out to everyone. Couldn’t get it to work though, and I didn’t really have much time to do so.

When all was done, I was in pain from having so little sleep, Brian headed to the airport a little before 7AM, and I headed out to school again to tape the summer kids final skit performances, which started at 11. I fell asleep for about an hour, involuntarily, and packed my book bag, which was about a million pounds heavy. I had all my camera equipment because I was hoping to tape some more student interviews, and also my laptop since I was planning on trying again to help encode that damn Sayonara Party video. I checked the trains with my keitai, and I made it in time, but they must have cancelled a train or something on the Musashino Line, because I would have been late to school. So, I decided to just go on Sobu Line and maybe take a cab. I ended up walking from Makuhari station since I couldn’t see a taxi, and was late to the start of the performances. Oh well.

Tried more on the Sayonara Vid, with no luck. I wish I could have gotten it to work, but all in all it doesn’t matter that much. They at least had the copy to show to everyone at the Sayonara Party. By around mid-day, the lack of sleep was kicking in, and I was being reminded all too well of last semester’s Sayonara Party, this past spring at IU’s finals week, and pretty much any “end of” time I have, where I leave work until the last second and end up not sleeping and feeling like death.

The Sayonara Party was really good. There were a lot of people, so having it at the school’s cafeteria Lapas (more like a restaurant, not like a ghetto school cafeteria) instead of Y’s was a very wise decision. This year’s party really did feel more like the “end of an era” than last semester’s, even though back then I didn’t know I would be coming back. It’s weird; I don’t know how to describe it really. After the party, a big group of us went to the Room Deco arcade for purikura and such. We ended up staying there for a long time, probably like 2 hours. Then we stopped by the conbini and went to a park for the rest of the night. By the time we got to the park, I only had about an hour left before last train, so I decided that I would just pull an all-nighter. The park was a lot of fun, had to say goodbye to people as they went home for the night and were leaving this weekend back for the states. Definitely is weird (I’m not going to say sad) to say goodbye to all those people. Either I’ve known them since last August or just since this June, but still, I won’t be seeing many of them ever again. IES/Japan really is a great time, and I’ll miss hanging out and seeing everyone. Things won’t be the same, but all the key people will still keep in touch, so that’s always cool. A-Team banzai.

Around midnight-ish, me, Seth, Mii, Yuji, Tomomi, Minami, and like 3 other Japanese kids walked all the way to Bamiyan since it’s open 24 hours. It was a lot of fun, but eventually everyone either left (if they lived in the area) or passed out. After everything, we woke up around 4AM to catch trains home. So much for the all-nighter, but it was still fun hanging out and sleeping on the Bamiyan table. So that was the end of another one of the longest and greatest finales in the life of Anthony Leong.