Musings about Japan and life as a human, a cosplayer, a minority, a music lover, an English teacher.

Life and My Day in Ikebukuro

Here are some pictures of my dorm. I know my mom would be interested to see what kind of space I have:

It appears that, although I requested a single room without a roommate, they gave me a double room. Oh well, I’m not complaining.

My desk. Japan doesn’t really use Wi-fi as much as we do, so the dorm doesn’t have Wi-fi. A PC is set up here, but since I have my MacBook (which also uses less power and thus lower bills) I don’t really need it. I unplugged the ethernet cable and plugged it into my MacBook. Internet in a snap.

What about my iPod touch, you say? Well, it’s not all that important, since the only place I can use its Wi-fi is…what? Not my dorm? Oh that’s right, my dorm doesn’t have Wi-fi. But guess what? My MacBook can be used as a wireless router/access point when connected to the Internet. Just enable Internet Sharing and bam–Wi-fi. Of course, I have security options set so no one else around here can steal my connection. So now I can use Wi-fi on my iPod Touch, which is useful for downloading mail in advance before going out the door, Internet capabilities at my bed (though I’d rather use my computer), and the iTunes Remote.

I have a fridge! And it’s bigger than the ones they allow in the dorms at Maryland. The TV has basic channels–cable and satellite isn’t really a regular thing in Japan, though it’s available.

I’m really glad that I have this tiny little kitchenette. Don’t worry Mom, the cookware and dishes came with the room, so I didn’t have to go out to buy any of it. I’m sure they all came from the 100 yen shop anyway. I cook my own breakfast and dinner for the most part, and go out for lunch when I’m not at the dorm. Rikkyo’s cafeteria has GREAT food, and it’s cheap. I’m looking forward to that when school starts.

Tiny little bathroom. American bathrooms are like luxury suites compared to this. I don’t particularly care, it’s made to carry out its purpose and that’s what matters to me.

I really like being on my own. Maybe not so much in the U.S., but out in an unfamiliar place, where I’m free to explore. I don’t always like to go places with other people because there’s always the, “I wanna go there!” “No, let’s go here!” of it all. I can decide where I want to go and not have to think about how my time is spent going where someone else wants to go. Of course, there are times where I do enjoy going places with other people, it’s not like it’s a bad thing.

I took a short walk around Ikebukuro Station and then the area nearby to see what I could find. I had a list of things I wanted to look for, but most of the things I actually bought weren’t on my list ^_^;

Japanese department stores are huge. There are usually at least 7 or 8 floors, give or take a few. They’re also expensive, so generally I don’t shop there and look for cheaper places. I decided to take a look at Tobu and Metropolitan Plaza. I didn’t take any pictures really; nothing all that important to see, except for these statues in the girls’ toys section at Tobu:

If I were rich, I would want this in my mansion.

After Tobu, I went to Metropolitan Plaza because there’s an HMV there, and I wanted to check out their music. I didn’t find much, but I did find a Claire’s right next to HMV. I don’t ever remember there being ear cuffs at the Claire’s stores in the U.S., so I bought three of them. Their earring selection isn’t as big either, which is unfortunate because I need a replacement pair for the third set of holes I have.

The next few photos are of Sunshine 60 Street. I ended up here when I spotted a Sanrio store across the street. There I bought a pink Hello Kitty DS case, some hand towels (they don’t have paper towels in Japanese restrooms, it’s a custom for people to carry a towel with them), and Hello Kitty Mineral Water, which is essentially water in a Hello Kitty bottle. There’s also a small store in the area called jam pixy, which has clothes for low prices. I bought two tops, a hat, and a plaid pleated skirt. I was actually looking for pants, but wasn’t sure what size would fit.

Sunshine City has couple of arcades and pachinko parlors, and of course some other shops. At the end there is the Sunshine 60 Building, which has 60 floors.

Can you spot the Sanrio store? The Sunshine 60 Building is peeking out from behind at the top right corner. I didn’t realize what that was before so I’ll have to go back there later.

Like I mentioned in my last post about Japan having multiples of a particular store near each other, HMV is also located in Metropolitan Plaza at the station.

Yes, the Sega Arcade is here. Oh what a day my brother would have just being here.

On the way back to the station, I spotted…a 100 yen shop. I was so excited. I went down and bought some necessities as well as food and drinks. I love good deals, and I love saving money =)

It is currently 9:01 AM Sunday morning here in Japan, and I’m thinking about going to Harajuku. That’s all for now.


5 responses to “Life and My Day in Ikebukuro

  1. seaofsmile March 15, 2010 at 7:00 am

    Hello, I'm na from thailandI'm going to be and exchange student at rikkyo university next month.I saw your dorm picIs it Rikkyo university international dormitory ( RUID)?

  2. seaofsmile March 15, 2010 at 7:02 am

    I saw your room picIs it rikkyo university international dormitory(RUID)?

  3. Christine March 15, 2010 at 10:49 pm

    The photos I posted here are from J-DREAM in Fujimidai. I don't know what the RUID dorms look like, sorry!

  4. dees2 March 30, 2010 at 7:03 pm

    Hello, I'm from canada and I am planning to visit my boyfriend who will begin his exchange at Rikkyo this April. He will be staying at RUID but it seemslike I won't be able to stay with him. Is there any way around it? ThanksDee(p.s. your blog's pretty helpful!)

  5. Christine April 6, 2010 at 2:25 am

    Hi Dee,From what I know about RUID, the rules there are pretty strict, so it's difficult to sneak anyone into the dorm or anything like that. I don't believe they allow overnight guests. You'll have to find a cheap hotel. Try looking up Sakura House, I think they might have better rates compared to a standard hotel.

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