Saturday, March 20, 2010

Gathering In Inage & Trip Back To Nagaoka

Short talk: Graduation ceremony was held yesterday, and it was a great one! Will be blogging on that in a couple of entries after this. Today will be my last day in Nagaoka, as I will be taking the bus back to Shinjuku, Tokyo later this evening. Gonna miss this place a lot, for sure!
It has been one week since I moved to Inage and phew, it has certainly been a hectic week. To take a break from that, I made a short trip back to Nagaoka for my graduation ceremony, held yesterday. I took the midnight bus from Shinjuku back to Nagaoka a day before my convocation. Guess what, that was my first and the last time to take a bus from Tokyo to Nagaoka in three-long years. The reason is because I'm so used to taking trains already all this while, and also because well, *ehem* I didn't know how to get the bus tickets haha!
Before going down to Tokyo to board my bus, I had a gathering with a few of my batch mates from various kosens around Kanto region that evening in Inage. I did my laundry before going out to meet them. Laundry usually takes up about ten to fifteen minutes but in the end, due to some misfortunes, I think I spend more than half-an-hour at the window!
IMG_5911
There is a shelve near the bathroom to place these stuff, but Cung is too lazy to put them back to their original place after using them everytime =.=
This is what happened. I took out the clothes from the washing machine, prepared the hangers, and was getting ready to hang them outside the window. But like always, Cung left his lotion, perfume, contact lenses solutions, etc at the window. When I opened the window, the careless me accidentally dropped one of the stuff down the window! It happened in a split second that I wasn't sure what was it. The only thing I knew was it was a tiny stuff. Luckily, it dropped on the steel veranda and not all the way down the ground floor.
So, I looked down to see what was that thing.
IMG_5913
A cylindrical thingy, which I later found out that it was a lip balm.
I took a clothes hanger to push it to the side, so that I could pick it up, but a wrong move made the lip balm rolled underneath the air-cond. Dah-lah the gap between the grill and the air-cond was so narrow, my arm also was a little huge that I couldn't reach the space below the air-cond. So, I decided to go all out to pick up the lip balm - by climbing out the window and onto the veranda.
But here is a problem - the railway track was just right behind my house and the trains come every five minutes. Climbing out the window would be a crazy thing to do, as the people inside the train who see me doing it might alert the station master that someone was attempting suicide haha wtf! I was Skyping with my cousin, Reena at that time and I told her if she never sees me again after I climbed out the window, then she should know what had happened to me lol!
IMG_5912
Tried using a hanger to push it out but in the end, it rolled underneath the air-cond =.=
Just when I was gonna stepped out of the window, I saw a warning label on the veranda that warned us against standing on it. Being a guy who is heavier than an elephant, I dare not take any risk, so I continued my mission by only using the hanger to push the lip balm out. While I risked my life by throwing half of my body out the window, Reena was sitting there, laughing at my actions =.=
I continued my attempt to push out the lip balm below the air-cond for some time, and when it was finally out, I squeezed my arms all the way down the narrow gap, until I reached it. To be honest, I was a bit worried, just in case my arms got stuck in between that gap. That time, I dunno who's gonna come to my rescue haha! I put that thought away, and went ahead to pick up the lip balm. This time however, I was extra careful not to let it rolled underneath the air-cond again. Finally, after some time, I completed my mission!
Felt super relived-lor at that time!
IMG_5915
Nice sunset during my walk from my house to the train station.
I quickly proceeded to hanging the clothes outside and went out to make reservation for the karaoke session later that night. Came back home to rest for a while, and then went out again to meet up with them at JR Inage Station. There were seven of us, including me - Bao Cong, Yow Keong, Mingrong, Pik Yee, Shuk Yee and Chang Yuan, who just came back from his trip to Okinawa, sponsored by his school. Damn nice, right?
It took us a while to decide where to have our dinner. In the end, we decided that to have our dinner at Saizeria, nearby the train station.
IMG_5916
Pik Yee, Shuk Yee, and Chang Yuan.
IMG_5920
Mingrong, Yow Keong, Bao Cong and the blue monster (inside joke).
Of the six people, the person whom I met most recently was definitely Bao Cong, which was just two days earlier, while the person whom I have not met for the longest period of time must be Pik Yee, Shuk Yee, and Chang Yuan. The last time was during our Golden Week Gathering in 2008. That was like two years ago. Nevertheless, everyone remained the same person, besides some minor changes in terms of appearances, especially Mingrong (as usual) haha! As always, gathering will always about gossips and stories about the latest couples in the batch. That was the main topic of the night haha!
Halfway through the chat, I got a comment from Chang Yuan, who said, "你的华语进步了" ("Your Chinese has improved already"), probably because he hasn't been listening to my half-passed Mandarin for a while already. Maybe it's true that it has improved slightly, but don't expect my Mandarin to be really fluent, because one still need to work his brain when speaking Mandarin with me haha!
IMG_5922
Group picture after our dinner.
It shouldn't be long until we get to meet again, because most of us will be based in the Kanto and Tokai region after this, which aren't very far apart from each other. The next gathering should be during the Golden Week this May.
They later went for karaoke session but I couldn't join them because I needed to pack my stuff and take the train to Tokyo, to board the bus back to Nagaoka. Ishikawa Sensei, our ex-Japanese language lecturer in PPKTJ, who now works in Chiba, joined them for the karaoke session as well. As for me, I got down at Shinjuku station and walked to the area where they board the express buses, located within the vicinity of the station. I was about two hours earlier by the time I reached there, because I didn't want that unfortunate incident to happen again >.<
IMG_5923
Shinjuku Station, busy as ever.
IMG_5925
Waited for the bus at the underground floor of Shinjuku Sky Building.
IMG_5926
Some area was open-air, so the sight of high-rise skyscrapers can be seen here.
IMG_5924
Saw this sign at the waiting area.
IMG_5928
Took out my laptop, thinking that I could surf the net while waiting.
Unfortunately, I later realised that the wireless LAN wasn't a free service. Well, I wasn't that desperate to go online. So, I just spent my time wandering around the place and wait until the bus time approached.
Like I've mentioned above, this is the first time I'm taking the express bus from Tokyo to Nagaoka, and I was a little worried if I would miss the bus, or get scammed by some bus companies which doesn't exist, since I bought the ticket through the net. If there's no bus, I wouldn't be able to attend my convocation the next day. How can-lah like that, right? Damn tragic, okay! But I was actually just too paranoid, because this is Japan and cases like this are almost non-exist here. Perhaps I was just too worried from hearing to the stories which often happen in Malaysia haha!
IMG_5932
Sights which is quite similar to Puduraya, but minus the chaotic atmosphere, and people yelling like nobody's business.
IMG_5935
On the left queue was the bus which was bound for Niigata.
IMG_5937
My bus ticket, which shows the bus number - #73.
Despite not having a proper building like the bus terminal in Puduraya, they conducted everything in a very professional and efficient way. Everything goes so smoothly - thirty minutes before the bus arrives, people would line-up and check-in their seats, then gather at one spot and wait until the bus arrives. When the bus was there, the staff would use a hailer to guide the passengers to board the bus and that is how simple it was.
After a five hour ride, I arrived in Nagaoka safe and sound, but was surprised by something.
~ to be continued ~

10 comments:

Tempus said...

argh!!!! i envy your on-the-go nomadic life!!!!! when can i enjoy that??!!!!

calvin said...

@ tempus:
it's fun and exciting, but at the same time, it's quite exhausting as well >.<

sakura said...

so much fun~

btw, how can u leave ur readers in suspense la.. T.T

Wee Kien said...

i think your chinese improve oso

kae vin said...

next time speak mandarin to me ya.

calvin said...

@ sakura:
that is one of the ways to make sure you guys come back to check out what the surprise is about =P

calvin said...

@ wee kien:
thanks! thanks!
still a lot to be improved =D

calvin said...

@ kae vin:
don't want. i'm gonna speak tamil with you xD

Tempus said...

yea but it sure is satisfying after u sit down and look through the pictures, knowing how many places u have been to

calvin said...

@ tempus:
yeah, indeed it is!
nothing beats the fun we get when we have our friends around us =D