Tag Archives: moving

Pirates of Japan?

Continuing my From East to West video series, I talk a bit about Japanese pirates. Actually, my daughter was pretending to be a pirate in the park while I talked about packing and throwing out garbage. Enjoy the video!

I’m going to try to get these videos done over the next month. Once I’m all caught up with these, I can work on the more travel-related Japan videos that should have a much broader appeal.

Let me know what you think about these videos in the comments below. If you want to see the entire playlist, you can go here. It’s in reverse chronological order.

My Last Visit to Kamakura

You may remember some videos I made about our move to Canada. The last one I did was exactly two weeks before our move. I found it difficult to do the other videos because of a lack of time and motivation. However, since I’ve been working on my YouTube channel quite a bit lately, I’m feeling the motivation to get those videos all finished. So, here is the next video in the series.

In this video, we visited Kamakura for the last time. It’s probably my favourite place in Japan, especially since I lived there for four years, but also because of the history and beautiful places. Enjoy the video!

What did you think? Let me know in the comments below.

Week in Review – June 12, 2016

It’s been a very interesting week. I’ve done plenty of work on my YouTube channel, and the results have been immediate. I’ll tell you all about it in his week’s update.


I’ve come to the conclusion that I need to set a time for me to read, and try do about 30 minutes a day at least. I’m still at 41% for Redemption Ark by Alastair Reynolds.


Until I have the office sorted, I can’t do much, unfortunately. Or I could move my computer to the kitchen sometimes, but I still don’t get much privacy there.


Nothing yet, and I don’t expect much this month. At least not until my YouTube channel gets more popular and I get some writing done.


I did a bit more of Esperanto. But I’m still a bit slow with that.


More swimming done. But the biggest thing is that many of the boxes we’ve been expecting have finally arrived! Woohoo!


This is the biggest news of the week, I think. I started Booktubing! And that single video has had so many more comments than any other video I’ve ever done, and in only a couple days. I’ve also gained seven new subscribers in only three days. I need to watch more videos of Booktubers. I might get some good book suggestions, discover new video ideas, and talk to a lot of people. Sounds fun! And so far, everyone has been very friendly. One thing about this is that most Booktubers are young women. Not so many men or older people. But I won’t let that deter me. Anyway, I posted four new videos with plenty more to come this week.

The Blog

Something I’ve noticed about stats this week is that June is slow! I’ve been posting as usual, but the views have dropped a fair amount. But summer tends to be a bit slow on the blogs. Coming this week (actually, probably later today) is an impression of the first episode of Sherlock. And also, I need to get three book reviews done. Need to catch up!


I’ve been a bad student. The online course I signed up for I haven’t even looked at. At least it’s free.

The Next Week’s Goals

As I said before, I hope to get some reviews done on the blog, as well as several videos. What you can expect for videos include one or two Japan-related videos and a couple book-related videos. Or maybe even more.

Although a bit unrelated, I need to make a blog post on Bob Ross.

How about you? How was your week? Let me know in the comments below.

We Have Boxes!

After a lot of waiting and frequent checking of international package tracking, most of our boxes have finally arrived. But there are still a couple more en route. They’ve been released to Canada Post, but haven’t been delivered yet. Probably next week.

My family is feeling on a bit of a high today. We got a lot of things we’ve been waiting for. My daughter got many of her favourite toys. My wife got a lot of Japanese things, including sauces and spices for food. And I got a box of books.

With all these boxes finally arriving, I’ll be able to go through my books and figure out which ones I sold and which ones I still have. I’ll be able to reconstruct my library. And once I’ve got my office sorted out, as well as bookshelves, I can give you a tour of my books. That will be great.

The Job Search

Looking for a job is one of my least favourite things to do. But it’s something I have to do. I worked for eleven years at my previous job in Japan, so it’s been a long time since I’ve had to change jobs.

Oddly, I enjoy looking at what’s available. It’s like going through a catalogue or browsing a bookstore. Interesting to see what there is, which ones I’d consider. Of course, many of them I don’t qualify for. But I’m putting out applications several times a day.

I’d say my least favourite part is writing cover letters. I have to customise them for each job, and it takes a lot of time to do it. The resume’s done, and I just tweak it for each position, highlighting what they ask for.

My second least favourite part is the wait. After having several resumes sent out, I’ve had one response. And that one was saying that the position I applied for is not available, but please try again in six months. And it was the job I wanted most, actually. But there are some other promising ones that look quite interesting. I just have to wait. And they’ve said they won’t contact anyone until after the closing date for each one. So, I have to wait until then.

At least I have something to occupy myself for the rest of the day today. Get my bank card finally sorted out and visit my daughter’s school for a parents’ orientation. That should be interesting. I’m looking forward to it.

What are your experiences in searching for jobs? How long did it take to find one? Let me know in the comments below.

Getting Used to Canada Again

The big skies of Alberta are so different than the building-restricted skies of Japan. The clouds are different. But I know the clouds can be incredible in summer.


That’s just one difference I can easily get used to. But what about everything else?

So far, supermarkets are no problem. I haven’t used Tap yet, as my bank card doesn’t appear to be activated yet. I have to get that done tomorrow. But the content of supermarkets and Costco are much the same as what I remember with a few differences. A lot more flavours of potato chips, for one thing. Also, we are living in Mill Woods, which has a large Indian population, so lots of Indian foods in the supermarkets.

Getting registered for health insurance was interesting, but turned out to be no problem.

Early closing times on weekends are difficult to get used to. In Japan, everything is open as late as weekdays. Here, everything closes around 5 pm. Very annoying.

The weather hasn’t really been any different than in Japan. It’s been kind of warm. But the sunset is much, much later. Sunrise is a bit later, though.

I thought I’d hear a lot more English than I do now. Actually, this neighbourhood has a lot of Punjabi.

I think the biggest thing I have to get used to at the moment is what to say while shopping. At the cashier, there’s a lot of small talk. Nothing is said in Japan.

Well, there’s more to get used to in the coming days. There’s a bit of exciting news in the next post, coming up soon! If you have any comments, let me know in the comments below.

Culture Shock of a Four-Year-Old in Canada

My daughter has spent only two nights in Edmonton now, and there are so many changes for her, I have to wonder what’s going on in her mind. She’s had a tough, yet exciting couple of days. But there are some things that she hasn’t been able to adjust to yet.

She now has her own bedroom. She loves it. She loves her new bed, desk, and shelves. She’s slept in the room for part of the last two nights, but due to jetlag, she’s woken up in the very early morning screaming. She was alone. She’s not used to waking up in bed alone at night. This will take a little time for her to get used to.

She went to the playground yesterday. It’s a big playground with many children playing. I heard several languages there, including English, Punjabi, and Russian. There are a lot of Sikhs living in this part of the city, and it’s very multicultural. My daughter was told that she needs to speak English, and she understood. She knows that English is a language that she understands, but she doesn’t speak it much. She went up to kids, said “Hello” in English, then continued to speak to them in Japanese. No kids would play with her, because they couldn’t understand her. It’ll take a little time, but she’ll eventually be speaking English fluently.

The water may have made her sick. She was used to drinking filtered pure bottled water. Now she’s drinking filtered hard water. She threw up three times last night, and I had to go to the drugstore to get an electrolyte drink for her. She’s been fine all day, though.

She actually ate regular meat yesterday. For dinner, we had pork chops, and surprisingly, she ate a lot of it. Normally, she doesn’t eat meat like that. She’ll only eat ground meat or chicken, because they’re easier to chew. But she had no trouble with the pork chops.

She’s also not completely sure of my mother yet. She’s only talked to her via Skype before, but now she has her in person all day to talk to. My wife and I went out briefly to get some salad, and we asked her if she wanted to come or stay home. She decided to stay home. Well, she cried, spent time at the den by the front door waiting for us, and then went to bed holding a book. She fell asleep and stayed asleep until about 11 pm tonight. Now she’s wide awake, watching Disney Junior.

Have you ever had a child have difficulty adjusting to a new living environment? Let me know in the comments below.

We Made It to Edmonton Safely

We’re in Edmonton now, and we are going to have to try settling in. Everything is so strange. It’s like a foreign country to me now.

Once I’ve got a spot set up for my computer, maybe tonight, I’ll do a regular monthly review. But starting tomorrow, we have a lot of sorting, setting up, shopping, address changing, school visiting, and registrations. Lots to do.

At least my daughter loves her new bed and bedroom.

Narita Airport-Bound

We are on our way to Narita Airport. After lunch, we’ll be checking in and going through security. Soon, we leave Japan.

I have a bit of apprehension because I’m leaving a country I’ve called home for eleven years. All the friends and students I’m leaving behind will always live on in my memory. But some I will keep in contact with on Facebook. I’ll see them again when we visit Japan.

I also worry about our daughter on the plane. Will she behave? Will she drive us and other passengers crazy? It’s her first flight, and she’s excited about it. But it’s so long. Hopefully she’ll sleep. I hope I can, too. I’ve never been able to sleep on a plane.

Well, I’ll update when we arrive in Vancouver. We’ll be canceling our cell phones at the airport, but I’ll be able to use wi-fi in many places, and we’ll have access to the internet in the hotel.

See you in Canada!

Only Two Days to Go!

Just a quick post. Things didn’t go exactly as planned, but we ended up getting a lot of administrative stuff done, including setting up city tax payment. We went back to our old neighbourhood for that.

It was strange being there, even though we only moved out last week. Everything felt different, like it’s familiar, but it’s not home. I guess that happens anyplace I’ve lived. But it was our last time there. We’ll probably visit in the future, though.

If you’ve moved from one home to another, do you ever go back to see your old home?